Rhymes for a Watertower

Listen to Christian Wiman reading this poem. A town so flat a grave’s a hill,     A dusk the color of beer. A row of schooldesks shadows fill,     A row of houses near.

A courthouse spreading to its lawn,
      A bank clock’s lingering heat.
A gleam of storefronts not quite gone,
      A courthouse in the street.

A different element, almost,
      A dry creek brimming black.
A light to lure the darkness close,
      A light to keep it back.

A time so still a heart’s a sound,
      A moon the color of skin.
A pumpjack bowing to the ground,
      Again, again, again.