Washington’s Crossing

by Ernest Hilbert

For Franz Wright

The railway bridge looms above the river’s
Slow black, a stone Roman aqueduct,
Remnant of an age of commerce gone quiet.

I once stood on the soggy bank and saw
The river run low on a September day.
Now, snow still holds, and night’s fallen.

The current is high and strong in the dark,
Tugging trunks toward the sea, bobbing,
Roots spiking out from foam and swinging like antlers.