Earthworm Castings

by Jean Ponzi

I float on a noodle in a country lake
On a big pink tube of fossil fuel
Compressed from bodies of Earthling neighbors
When this land lay under forgotten seas
I bob (just an extra) in a pageant of droplets
Advancing, receding with no intermission
Flowing or locked into ice-crystal patterns
Always glistening under a star
Ablaze with energy more than sufficient
To power our every need and movement
Perfectly quiet, persistent and clean
If we would (and we COULD) attune our needs
To this planet’s generous ebb and flow,
Respectful of Less as a healing value,
Dancing partner, essential balance, of More
Attuned to the ancient wisdom of water

I stand in the spray of a cool night shower
Water soothes my overheated nerves
Smooths my skin free of prickly heat
Bathes off the tacky coats of sweat
Shrouded on by this triple-digit heatwave
I choose to live in the real summer climate
In the uncontrolled power of heat extremes

It’s not so ferocious when you meet heat calmly
But without cool water I could not sleep

I pour dregs of drinking glasses and dog bowl
Onto thirsty plants around our home
I toss dish water out onto the hostas
And splash-clean the bird bath toward struggling ferns
Giving thanks with each turn of a tap or faucet
For the force of life that flows to me

Water is giving me food and clothing
Transports me to work and play appointments
Water moving through plants is keeping me breathing
Water deals with the waste my body can’t manage
Water rocks me, lapping at this big pink noodle
Outside and within the skin I inhabit
Water molecules humming life’s glorious anthems

I am a vessel of sacred substance
Water uses me to make its rounds
Refreshing my kin on this precious planet
Where every ounce of gratitude
Cycling through all Earth’s times and locations
Condenses, precipitates
New gifts and graces

Hear Jean Ponzi over radio waves Mondays 7-8 p.m. hosting Earthworms on 88.1 KDHX and Sundays 1-2 p.m. hosting Growing Green St. Louis on the Big 550 KTRS (podcasts at www.kdhx.org/ondemand and www.ktrs.com)

Search National Geographic Water Footprint Calculator to check your relationship to water and explore some personal gratitude options.