After winter’s blast, a gang of us swarms the banks of the Thames beneath a leaden sky, picking our way through mud contaminated with sewage, slippery and sucking at our boots. We wear our hungry faces like masks, our hands red and purple from the icy wind. Occasionally, a cry goes up as someone skids and slips towards the water.
My little brother, shivering in his thin jacket, grips my arm, hoping for a safe place to perch while I prod the mud for treasure: a brooch, a penny, a cracked clay pipe, to sell or exchange for a scrap of meat or fish for our supper.
Behind the skeleton of a rowing boat, the Rock cries out to us today: “You may stand upon me, but do not hide your face.”
We smile at each other, and I lift him onto the rock.
Kim M. Russell, 20th January 2020
My response to dVerse Poets Pub Prosery: “The Rock cries out…”
This Monday Frank T. is our barkeeper for another Prosery, a prompt to write nor more than – or exactly – 144 words of prose, using a given line from a poem.
Frank reminds us that the United States has been celebrating the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The line is from a poem inspired by him and written by Maya Angelou, ‘On the Pulse of Morning’:
“The Rock cries out to us today, You may stand upon me, But do not hide your face.”