The Water Rises

Annika Sellke, Freshman, Newberg, Oregon


Rain fills the bioswale as the curtains sway
with the soft breaths of a fluffy white dog
who wishes to sleep his energetic morning away.
The two boys near me discuss the new game,
while beside them I find my mind pulled astray
in search of a different, more nostalgic day…


I watch from the water as the three of us squirm
under the setting sun while the golden
dog perks his ears and runs to the pond.
As the wheel turns, water pours from the spout to bring
movement to those who are unhappy without.
Suddenly we can do anything, no doubt!
Grass tickles our feet, twigs get caught in our hair,
And we race until one of us screams: “It’s not fair!”


We sit frozen in awe at the sight of the sleek little water
bugs that give us a fright – forget spiders, you see – I don’t
want any water bugs crawling on me! The little one
giggles and wiggles with glee as the golden dog paddles
confidently. As if in response he sits still as can be and
the pond cools his gilded scales till the water and the shouts too
subside, as if they themselves came with the tide. They were
taken inside to sleep, on break until the water rises again next week.


The fluffy white dog stirs with a yawn.
I blink and he’s golden, Blink again,
and it’s gone. I frown in confusion
and turn away from the rain
to pluck a stray twig from the fluff
as the little white dog complains with a huff.
The boys look over at me as I smile, quietly.
They ask, “what’s that for?” and, of course, I can do nothing
but smile some more. And I say that I’m glad – glad as
can be – that we all get to be our own little, quirky family.