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Marrowbone Spring

By John I. Blair

Who would guess
But for the silent metal sign
How much has happened here?

A shallow swale
Strewn with rocks and sticks,
Trashed with waste
From parking lots nearby,
On wet days muddy,
Hard as brick on dry.

Famous once
For sandstone-filtered waters,
Magnet for thirsty animals, thirsty folk,
It saw life ebb and flow
For eons on this baking prairie.

Then came the Texians,
Sam Houston, soldiers
At a military post,
Plantations set in dusty fields,
Slave cabins, sorrows, joys,
Church picnics, brawling boys.

A scattered town, Comanche raids,
Rumbling coaches bound for Abilene,
Cotton far as eye could see.

But all these memories are gone,
Consumed by urban wilderness,
Mile after concrete mile;
Rains sealed from the aquifer,
This sweet oasis shrank
To an anomaly,

What’s here now?

Not even ghosts.

©2009 John I. Blair

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