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Sweet Thames . . .

by Vic Keegan

I walk by the Thames I know so well
Caught again by a riverine spell

I know you well but I know you not
An endless flow without a plot
You rise from a field in Gloucestershire
Which in summer is just a dried up mire
I went there once to stop and stare
At a beloved river that wasn’t there
For much of the year its source is dry
Nothing there for the naked eye

Then suddenly without warning this source so fickle
Rises from the dead to become a trickle
And never wishing to admit defeat
It flexes its muscles from a height of 360 feet
Above sea level and then makes merrie
On a zig-zag journey to the Thames estuary

Which is 160 miles away but en route
Salt water repels its daily commute
Where it came from or where it is going
We have no way of easily knowing

Except to rejoice that behind this fuss
The Thames is really part of us
Our every breath so the scientists say
Has molecules of Ceasar’s breath gone astray

The Thames rolls on with bits of you and me
And everyone else that you can see
Poets could tell you more
But It’s our river for sure
And a cause of sombre elation
Molecules in continuous recreation

Nature and humans together belong
Sweet Thames run softly till we end OUR song.

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