He stands knee deep in the little river in gabardene pants
It’s 1959, and he has brought his son here
To this place where he spent his own boyhood.
He has a job now and bills to pay and nothing to spend
On any frill like blue jeans
But he knew that he must get the boy down to the river
This river, that is shallow and wide
And where the sun glints off of the clear water
And where clouds of minnows then swirl in the brightened channels.
He dips and reaches underwater, and to the river bottom
And lifts a black-shelled mussel, big as his own hands,
from its track in the sand
And in the way that he learned long ago
And with the strength of youth that is still his
He pulls the shell apart and lays the clam open in his hands.
He calls to the boy and then shows him the gleam inside
The blue veins and the jewel colors that vanish in an instant.