In praise of wounded water bearers

In praise of wounded water bearers


Meeting prayers with grenades

on a North Dakota bridge

over water troubled

by a greedy oil snake

feasting on a 21 year old girl’s arm



And now the flesh

the stunned veins

the exhuberant nerves

that once held

bottles of water

to quench a thirst

that knows no end

can no longer bridge

thought and action


Downstream they float

buoyed by the molecules of life

singing them a song

of the Spirit

flowing as they have

since the first day of Creation.


Don’t go seeking balms in Gilead

the shapnel of wars past and present

jabbing and scarring

the lethargy of a decrepit order

as the earth deploys her children

of this seventh generation

to regain her breath and song.


Pina Piccolo, for Standing Rock