All It Takes

for Allen

Tennessee creek at the bottom of the hill,
ankle deep at the waterline,
two young boys with a summer to kill;
and all it took was a little time.

Humid mornings, after a rain,
swollen current all stained with clay;
wait ‘til noon for the creek to drain
and the water to wash the stain away.

Crawfish pinchers can raise some blood;
learn to scoop them up from behind
before they scurry beneath the mud.
All it takes is a little time.

Flip a rock in the bed of the creek,
see them scuttle for a hole to hide in;
like children playing hide-n-seek—
the one game we would never win.

She calls from the porch when it’s time to go;
leave the water and begin the climb
up the hill and along the road.
All it takes is a little time.

So many rocks we never pried
up from the mud beneath the flow,
so many doors we never tried,
so many things we didn’t know.

Up the hill and along the road—
you from your house and me from mine—
and never a thought how far we’d go.
All it took was a little time.