And thus we came to it, the falls’ vertiginous
chain mail welded in spume and walking
a cream-coloured column atop black basalt
now black now red in the standing wave
with living fish flashing upwards and backwards
upended in the din still climbing stranded
in volumes no night no day neither
handhold nor footprint just that continuous falling
not one of them made its way through
as we stood and looked down from the precipice
all silver and steam and the wind-borne mist pricking our faces
whether luck or necessity necessity or folly
now held us: Enter it said the river’s falling
enter it and entered instead its thunderous names.
This appeared in the October 2011 issue.
Roo Borson has won both the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Griffin Poetry Prize. Her eleventh book, Rain; Road; An Open Boat, was published in 2012.