Understanding Aqua

Day 29 prompt: aqua


I never understood “aqua.”

That color in the crayon box

didn’t match

the waters of my childhood.

The creek on our farm runs clear.

The painted public pool is blue.

The canal in our town stands brown.

The Mississippi River flows black.

At last in the big city,

I stood over the Chicago River.

It’s green on St. Patrick’s Day,

brown all the rest.

People tell me there are parts

of Lake Michigan that are blue.

All I have seen from LSD is gray,

with white ruffles when the wind is up.

At last, in adulthood,

I ventured out of the Midwest.

The Bahamas, Maui, Puerto Vallarta,

Riviera Maya, the continental coasts

of Florida and California.

And now I understand.

Crayola’s color titlers

must have beheld the ocean.

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