The Barge.


(Inspired by an article by Ron Nixon)

A barge is something so immense to little boys who view

Them from a Mississippi bridge as they pass two by two.

Filled with coal or sand or oil – or cavernous with space,

A barge majestic on the roll of water has spare grace.


Before the semi trod upon the asphalt highway lane,

Before the horse-drawn wagon crossed the honeysuckled plain,

The river and its cargo went their solitary way;

Full of mud and thunder on a sultry summer’s day.


I could wish to be upon a barge by tugboat prodded;

The envy of the world and by all little boys applauded.

Navigating locks and dams, a Huckleberry Finn –

Baptized daily in the flood and innocent of sin.