Why All Rivers Flow That Way

A river thrives with its tributary,
To pursue and course its destiny.
Unwaveringly obedient to its cause;
Earnestly it flows by nature’s laws.

All rivers bend, mustered with flush,
O’er rocky pathways, they will gush.
Flowing sometimes straight, with a rush;
And at other times, with a gentle hush.

Obedient always to a purposeful quest,
Ever moving onward, without rest.
Why do all rivers flow that way?
That is the call of nature’s play.

From hills or mountains rivers descend,
Winding their way, steadily they wend.
Ever flowing towards the sea;
All rivers seeking to be free.

Cycling o’er the land as a living force,
Of potential hydro-electrical source.
For power drainage, and for food;
For building homes from forest wood.

Providing many recreational needs,
Rivers deliver us their good deeds.
Highland birds, insects and fish;
They, too, follow a river’s rushing swish.

Mammals of various types often roam by,
With a host of birds to sweep the sky.
Rivers meandering, make their bend;
Hikers exploring,  curious to find their end.

Some rivers flow with tidal mouth,
Some having basins awfully stout.
Some with tributaries that form lakes;
Some as waterfalls with rushing quakes.

Some as marshes, or a flood plain,
Some offering shelter; for animal grain.
Some with delta, a city planner’s delight;
For nation building, where populations alight.

A river is a tributary for human life,
Nature’s offering to diminish strife.
A wellspring for the human soul;
To flourish and to make things whole.

A river thrives with its tributary,
To pursue and course its destiny.
Unwaveringly obedient to its cause;
Earnestly it flows by nature’s laws.

About this poem

There is a symbiotic codependent relationship between rivers and civilizations. The Indus, Ganges, and the Nile, the Euphrates and the Tigris, are some of the major rivers of the world that enabled and facilitated the development, growth, and flourishing of early civilizations. In the biblical tale of Noah and the flood, we surmise and recognize, along with the support and confidence of scientific information, that when rivers recede after flooding, they invariably leave fertile silt behind, profitable for farming, crop growth, and agricultural development. As this poem points out, rivers are a great source of water for civilizations and for the provision of reliable transport systems (e.g., rafting, shipping, various means of navigation and the conveying of goods and merchandise). Indeed, all early civilizations found it necessary and of expedience to settle near rivers or bodies of water; and from these locations to establish larger societies, leading up to nation-building and to the complexities of increasing technological developments. In today’s world of the twenty first century, it is instructive to note that, when compared to other clean energy sources such as wind and solar, hydropower, the power obtained from flowing water, has achieved and maintained high levels of technological maturity and sophistication. Rivers, indeed, as aqua vitae, are a wellspring for the human soul, enabling it to flourish and to make things whole. Rivers and civilizations enjoy a profound symbiotic relationship of codependency. This poem is written as a rhymed quatrain with eleven stanzas, the first and last composed in the form of a poetic Inclusio. 

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Written on November 12, 2022

Submitted by karlcfolkes on November 12, 2022

Modified by karlcfolkes on November 12, 2022

1:36 min read

Quick analysis:

Scheme AABB cccc ddee ffaa ggxx hhii jjff xxkk llmm nnoo AABB
Closest metre Iambic pentameter
Characters 1,670
Words 322
Stanzas 11
Stanza Lengths 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4

Karl Constantine FOLKES

Retired educator of Jamaican ancestry with a lifelong interest in composing poetry dealing particularly with the metaphysics of self-reflection; completed a dissertation in Children’s Literature in 1991 at New York University entitled: An Analysis of Wilhelm Grimm’s ‘Liebe Mili’ (translated into English as “Dear Mili”), Employing Von Franzian Methodological Processes of Analytical Psychology. The subject of the dissertation concerned the process of Individuation. more…

All Karl Constantine FOLKES poems | Karl Constantine FOLKES Books

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1 Comment
  • teril
    This is really a beautiful tribute. I like the way your rhyme helps the poem flow and meander. Gentle and well-crafted.
    LikeReply1 year ago


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