Get Your Premium Membership

Soul Stance River - 3

Night one on the new river, the campfire is spirited
and the future appears hospitable,
everyone has their rations, everybody is resting their pride
for on an expedition epic to each man and for a republic as well
souls must stand sober to undomesticated circumstance and calamity's call,
Dickson and Flyod are on watch duty tonight, in the elms they sit and listen,
disaster and death demand our respect, the mission necessitates that we be prey,
I trust that Sea Man, my Newfoundland dog will be watching them,
with his final moments of strength before sleep Clark, as cartographer
has begun making his meticulous map in the mild candle light,
the compasses look like brass arrows 
aimed into a sketch of ghostly renaissance landscape,
as my mind begins to collapse into the corners of subconscious creation
I ruminate on the journey of Marco Polo, his reception into the court of Kubla Khan
exotic enlightenment exchanged between the tapestries of curious threats
and the gravity of Indian relations pulls my attention within the sphere of brute diplomacy, 

For several days I've been hiking the interior woodlands
alternating the cohort daily to provide total exercise, to subdue monotony
and also to perpetuate the fearless fascination that they'll need
to revere the suffering and ensuing success of the mission,
it is not unusual for us to hike 40 miles a day,  our Kentucky rifles and senses clean
rendezvouing with the crew and camp near dusk delivering game, grunge and odd wonders,
we are all deft huntsmen, in the east hunting was a passion as well as a necessity
all of the recruits are outdoorsman,  tough, roudey and rude but also smart as prarie hawks
Clark and I are Virginian Gentleman,  prepared to kill with cause and to lead with clear authority,
it is crucial that we supplement the keelboat's food provisions
with fresh meat, fruits and vegetables whenever feasible,
on board there are tons of soup, pork, cormeal, flour, beans, salt, pepper and lard,
many barrels of whiskey have been brought along for emotional nourishment and as gift,
every evening each man receives his four ounces, and every night they absorb the gruel of toil,
this afternoon I was surveying the land for agricultural fitness
and collecting botanical specimens such as the dogtooth violet, dovesfoot and cowslip flowers
Peter Cruzzatte, the best big game tracker of the bunch
shot and field dressed two meaty deer and a fat elk,
he is stealth as sin in the Sunday wind, our bellies thank him,
no natives have been seen yet,
while observing and hunting we have found thin trails
that simply lead into quiet expanses,
this tighens the nerves a bit
we are anxious to establish affable feelings with the numerous tribes, especially the Sioux,
the English trapper Bobcat Pendleton whom we met two days ago
said that the Yankton Sioux held territory about two hundred miles up river,
he also indifated that the Sioux weren't skin dressers
that they'd play hard,
he said the Sioux Nation weren't interested in speeches and medals,
they would demand tribute,
beads, amo, whiskey, tobacco, 
Clark and I are prepared to impress, one way or the other,
tonight the river is lying still, like a woman with a wish in her heart,
the moon is high and golden plump, nestled in a ripple of smokey clouds,


Copyright © | Year Posted 2015

Post Comments
Please Login to post a comment
Date: 2/18/2016 12:23:00 AM
You know how to keep readers interested; every single line moves the story forward, and done with such poetic flair, and curious metaphors. These two in particular caught my attention, "Stealth as sin in the Sunday wind", and "the river lying still, like a woman with a wish in her heart" << wonderful! You trick us into thinking you were there, all those years ago, and chronicling it as you went.
Login to Reply
Bordner Avatar
Justin Bordner
Date: 2/18/2016 12:45:00 PM
I had to become History to tell History Timothy, oh how awesome it is! Those two lines are exquiste in their own right, one has the humor and religious suspicion of the Day, the latter, is a most beautiful epiphany of a woman's delicacy and powerful faith that she reveals in the solitude of her nights. I also like how the gravity of diplomacy, and its dangers manifest in this portion of the piece...J.A.B.
Date: 12/20/2015 12:39:00 AM
I love how you are able to inject passion even in history, I am enjoying this journey you're taking me on , I so love to learn , and this is doing it eloquently. I'll read more when I have some free quality time.The last two lines are exceptional.
Login to Reply
Bordner Avatar
Justin Bordner
Date: 12/21/2015 3:05:00 AM
Your compliment has me on the verge of tears my Lady Hawk, I put everything I could into this composition, it took me to the edge of my heart, and beyond any artistic threshold I knew heretofore. Only my poetry for the woman I love compares to the effort. J.A.B.
Date: 12/14/2015 2:51:00 AM
A most thoughtful and engaging section, Justin... again, the wild nature is thrilling...your masterful descriptions are always so fascinating. Lewis's account is carefully attentive to his surroundings, musings and comrades. You must have studied their history so well - very impressive work so far..."tonight the river is lying still, like a woman with a wish in her heart" The gentle stillness of the river..profound comparisons, profound journeying..always, Laura
Login to Reply
Bordner Avatar
Justin Bordner
Date: 12/14/2015 3:17:00 AM
I have lived their odyssey, through my visions, and study, which I will elaborate on when I finish posting the work Laura. Your excitement is plucking my heart now, I'm feeling hungry for your sensuous are so special to me, I can taste your magic, hear your intellect. I thought of you when I wrote that moment Poetess...Justin