At Long Wharf Park, a great blue heron guards the water,
a patient fisher leaning his beak toward stirring water.
Now-peaceful Long Wharf, where whole bodies became this:
strong legs, good teeth, backs to carry bathtub water.
Harriet Tubman’s grandma in the ship’s heavy heat.
Stench of shit, dead flesh. The air outside, soft as water.
Black sailors—freemen—bearing news and friends, showed
Harriet the Northern Star to travel by land and water.
To this shore she’d return, hide for months among trees:
patient fisher of men by the Transquaking water.
When she went to die in the home she built for the poor,
her lungs filled up to choking with thick green water.
Imagine me, Amanda Gunn, traversing this bridge,
Mahalia singing me there--Children, wade in the water!
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