In a Riparian Zone

In this season, the river is revealed to us 
through bared branches; through our back windowpanes; 
its fog-steam rising in cold morning. 
A brick smokestack’s refracted reflection floats at its surface. 
Once spewing toxins from a laundry cleaning facility, 
the tall stack now stands dormant, still-reaching to clouds,
a vanishing point in our view to the west. How wide is the riparian band?
Does it have an end?
Looking out just now, I catch sight of two small flickers; 
small black and white woodpeckers, one redheaded. 
Then, the swoop-flight of wind-surfing black-capped chickadees 
riding a current from tree to feeder-seeds, sending a thrill that rivers 
over me and spreads, in ripples, to eternity.


Marjorie Moorhead’s poems are found in journals such as Verse-Virtual, Tiny Seed Literary, Amethyst Review, Sheila-Na-Gig, Writing In a Woman’s Voice, Bloodroot Literary, and others, as well as many anthologies, and the two chapbooks Survival: Trees, Tides, Song (FLP 2019), and Survival Part 2: Trees, Birds, Ocean, Bees (Duck Lake Books 2020). A full collection is forthcoming in Spring 2022. Marjorie writes to discover and honor ways of survival with our planet and with others and to be in community with other explorers exercising their unique voice and stories.