Above Water

can’t keep my head above water
_nothing here my weary hand can hold
_and, if I never see the shore: just another victim of the flood.

now the wind is dead, the waves are gone
i lay my hand on the shore
but, as i drag myself dry, i feel the rain on my shoulder like a song from the sky
to fill the valley again

can’t keep my head above water
_my home is drowned beneath the seas of rain
_but, will the seed i planted there grow in time to let me build again?

now the flood is passed, my home is gone
i lay my head on the shore
but, through the flood in my eyes, i see a pattern of stone: just a square in the mud
the bare foundations of home

i built my home on the high ground
_“nothing here to fear,” i said aloud
_but, as i spoke, i realized that my silence would have said it well

i chose the seed for a sturdy tree
tamped down the soil around it, but will it grow?
make plans, keep everything so straight
but the waters will rise up again, i know

you’ve got to build your base, take your time
don’t want to raise this house any faster than it’s meant to climb
can’t build a world of understanding in a day
so ask yourself: are you trying to help it along or just trying to have your way?
because then, in time, the tree will bear
even though neither you nor i may live to be there

my thoughts run wild and my thoughts run free
_“is this the price i pay for being strong and keeping my head above water?”
_is this the price i pay for building?

now, the flood is passed, my home is gone
i lay my head on the shore
but, as the drowned earth dries, i see the shape of a sail against the ash of the sky
above the water still

the silent fear of rain was not enough to stop me
but, heaven is out of reach
what will i do when the storm returns again?

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