All day long we flow companionably beside each other,
Colorado River bounding and bubbling toward the West,
Amtrak’s silver California Zephyr snaking Eastward.
We roll as steadily on our steel rails set at a 4% grade
as the great river tumbling over and upon itself.
Brown and swift, the Colorado digs at and carries away
these mountains, as it has for more than a million years.
Dense with a swirling load of silt on its way to an ocean,
the great river drills deepening canyons on the same
free-falling thousand-mile journey as ever.
Passing through dozens of valley-long reservoirs, vain
attempts by man to constrain, tame its essence, the surge
presses to an ageless path that neither colliding continents
nor flowing volcanoes, over eons, could ever breach
as it reaches for the faraway beckoning sea.
first published in Poetry Atlas
©2013 Bonnie Manion