Gallery IV: Starrucca Viaduct

A series of loose Petrarchan sonnets meditating on the Hudson River School. These were featured as part of “Falling for Pawling,” a musical production based on student works performed by the Sherman Chamber Ensemble. This is the fourth poem in the series.

We’re like the two fish in the sea (1), once asked

By a wise old fish, “How’s the water?” They swam on

Without care, till on the both of them it dawned.

“What on earth is water?” they asked, flabbergasted.

We swim, like them, in moonlit rivers (2), steadfast

In drifting, never dreaming of snow on a Swiss lawn (3),

Of Greenwood Lake (4), of falling gardens in Babylon,

Of love; unconscious, floating, thinking this is the last.

We think this is the world, for all we know is here.

And in our future, everything above will still not matter.

But one day we must open our eyes, and that I fear.

I fear the day we must wake up and gather

The air in our lungs, when it all becomes clear,

When we see the truth, and realize, “This is water. This is water.” (5)

  1. Looking Out To Sea by Jasper Francis Cropsey
  2. Moonlit Lake by Jasper Francis Cropsey
  3. Winter in Switzerland by Jasper Francis Cropsey
  4. Greenwood Lake by Jasper Francis Cropsey
  5. “This Is Water” by David Foster Wallace

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