Poetry

The Gold Rush – Caroline Hedin

He’s back from panning gold
In the entrails of the basin.
That’s how it is for him still
Even though the rush has ended.

Without the push of tarnished elbows,
He can take his time
To sift through the remains
Of an era when the past was
Pawed up and left half-eaten.

Don’t you see it?
That lit window along the creek?
A square of moonlight that lets
The mud and gravel slips through it?

That’s where he lives still
One eye to the gold,
One eye looking out
To the place where miners
Used to bury themselves in the darkening muck.

But what does he keep searching for
When he’s the one chest deep in the rubble?
For he’s known since the day he was
Born deep in the pit, that glitter only
Comes with the light.

That’s how it is for him still
Even though he knows that the
Greatest treasures always bend
Through the sieve.

That’s how it is for him still
As his eyes still pan the horizon
On the underbelly of each shard of rock
When he holds them up to the sky.

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