The Lost Country

Fall 2014 • Vol. 3, No. 1

issn 2326-5310 (online)

Possessing the Pond

By Ann Applegarth

This work was published in the Fall 2014 issue of The Lost Country. You may purchase a copy of this issue from us or, if you prefer, from Amazon.

A red-winged blackbird
perched on the stump where turtles sun
proclaims the day. He names this pond,
for naming a thing can make it yours for
a time–to love, to use, to guard, to tend.
I, too, shall name this lovely spot,
but the name I say is not the blackbird’s
word, and I shall own this pond when
Blackbird sings no more, for I am
planted here, and I have found work:
to rise at dawn and stroll along the bank
and laugh at coots that skitter
on the surface of the pond like frantic
water bugs, to count the downy baby geese
and pray that they will thrive, to speak
a word of cheer to that dour duck
who basks and swims and sleeps alone,
to help the sun climb high enough
to skim the rosy Coburg Hills, to seek
the One who named both bird and me.