A lot of us were upset when it
was ploughed over and leveled.
The black mold foxing up the walls
of the new school’s foundation
neither takes a figurative shape
nor scripts a vandal’s invective;
but, there’s no doubt about it,
it’s pure naiad scorn.
There’s an old story about
a king marrying one. In one
of Virgil’s stories, didn’t a mother
guide her frustrated son to the key
of how things change; some trouble
with lethal, unintended consequences
springing up like agitated
snakes or a colony of bees?
An Austin friend of mine
goes on about the monarchs
and about how gods
and goddesses are eternal,
even when people
completely fall silent,
stop worshipping them.
She has a lot to say
about a native spring
that use to be a charming spot.
Once, in Luarca, a small village
in northern Spain, I visited a legendary
urban spring, La Fuente del Bruxo.
Someone had marked the source
with a four-leaf clover carved in stone,
had installed a spigot. The locals
(whose ancient language is Bable)
say that water use to always
run there, that it was a Celtic site.
My last visit, I was piqued
to see that someone had built
on top of the ancient location.
Another disconcerted pilgrim
had scrawled VERGOÑA
in fierce black spray paint
across one of the new walls.
Back then, we didn’t have
a place to hang out. No mall.
There was one remote spot. . .
a little spring. An ancient wall spigot
was mounted near a limestone cliff
green with maidenhair fern and frogs.
It was a beautiful place!
We’d trounce there to skinny dip,
picnic, eat the wild figs
that grew there;
sometimes, we’d hike on
down to Bull Creek.