Mother Brook flows behind Flanagan's supermarket.
It is there you will find Nature at her worst.
That she can be beautiful I've seen as clear as any -
On the highway even,
With her green maidens engaged in slow, seductive dance on either side,
And her white zeppelins floating with a grace unknown to ours.
And even in my own back yard
I have taken sweet sustenance from these her vines,
And played among her lowest creations in my youth,
And felt never in bad company.
But here, behind this plaza, is an adverse side of Nature.
The brook barely flows anymore,
Or if it does, through pipes.
The smell of dead algae is not surprising,
In light of the green mud
Where once this river flowed.
And the swans, unmindful of the dealings of man,
Come to fish and swim, but instead sit in filth.
I remember fishing here,
I couldn't have been but ten.
I was among friends,
And most generous ones at that -
The wind played music for me,
To which the swans danced,
And the sky painted a beautiful picture.
I was young and life was all I knew,
No trace of death could I see.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.