Paradox Along the Arkansas River: Images of Life and Death

As I walk along the path beside the Ark River, I have been paying attention to the paradoxes of the beautiful things (wildlife, flowers) and the ugly things (trash). I plan to post a weekly picture of one of these paradoxes.

I think the following Mary Oliver poem, from the book Red Bird, is a fitting introduction.

From This River, When I Was a Child, I Used to Drink

But when I came back I found

that the body of the river was dying. 


"Did it speak?"


Yes, it sang out the old songs, but faintly.


"What will you do?"


I will grieve of course, but that's nothing.


"What, precisely, will you grieve for?"


For the river. For myself, my lost

joyfulness. For the children who will not

know what a river can be - a friend, a

companion, a hint of heaven.


"Isn't this somewhat overplayed?"


I said: it can be a friend. A companion. A

hint of heaven.