The Heart Walls of the D R Canal
Every form of life has it's walls, nothing, no one stands alone
some are trees, brush, branch, twig and wood and bark
some are mortar and stone, mere workers flesh and bone
others lay in memorials of the mind and heart of freedom's start.
Walking in the shadows of the forest growing bare
the pathway, worn and tattered by twigs and leaves of this locale
abandoned layers born of unknown, hidden architects no longer there
an opening spillway becomes a stage to walled canals.
Some harvested stone stacked upon each side
keeping water flow secure along Delaware and Raritan park roams
contained and directed from Bound Brook on to Princeton pride
away from the mix of dirt and cobblestones.
Who once walked here, where canoed and kayak waters strewn?
along this unpaved curl of hidden trails indemnity
twists and turns unfurling to a spillway hewn
where memorials now stand as markers without memory.
They say, Irish immigrants built this waterway like a well-planned quilt
some bodies buried where they worked and died
benath the rocked mortared wall containments blood built
and their hearts sought freedom without walls that today still cry,
For Craig Cornish cotest, A Wall in the Woods
Background: The 70-mile Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park is one of central New Jersey's most popular recreational corridors for canoeing, jogging, hiking, bicycling, fishing and horseback riding. The canal and the park are part of the National Recreation Trail System. This linear park is also a valuable wildlife corridor connecting fields and forests. A recent bird survey conducted in the park revealed 160 species of birds, almost 90 of which nested in the park.
With its wooden bridges and 19th century bridge tender houses, remnants of locks, cobblestone spillways and hand-built stone-arched culverts, the canal is a tremendous attraction for history lovers. The upper portion of the feeder canal follows the Delaware River through historic New Jersey towns such as Frenchtown, Stockton and Lambertville. The main canal passes the Port Mercer bridge tender's house, through the charming villages of Kingston and Griggstown to Blackwells Mills.
Copyright © DM Babbit | Year Posted 2020
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