Published on Academy of American Poets (

Bridge Called Water

I wrote hard
on paper
at the bottom
of a pool
near a canyon
where the stars
slid onto their bellies
like fish
I wrote:
I went through
the mountain
through the leaves
of La Puente
to see the moon
but it was too late
too long ago
to walk on glass.
Near those years
when the house fell on me
my father told me
draw mom
in bed with
another man—
From a plum tree
the sound of branches
fall like fruit
I’m older
no longer afraid
my voice like water
pulled from the well

where the wind had been buried
where someone was always

running into my room
asking, what’s wrong?


Copyright © 2018 by Diana Marie Delgado. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on September 19, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

About this Poem

“In most of my poems, the structure comes last and that was the case for this one: an inverted narrative that begins with a denouement and ends with an experience of unspoken fear. The title, ‘Bridge Called Water,’ is connected to a dream I had in which on a bridge at the bottom of a canyon I met a man, who, in conversing with me, gave me an overwhelming sense of peace. However, that peace, although I did not realize this in the dream itself, was, I realized later, only attainable because I had died. The portion of the poem in which I sit with my father at a kitchen table actually took place and has stayed with me like a splinter; this poem presented me with the opportunity to take it out.”
—Diana Marie Delgado


Diana Marie Delgado

Diana Marie Delgado is the author of Late-Night Talks With Men I Think I Trust (Center for Book Arts, 2015), andTracing the Horse, which is forthcoming from BOA Editions in the fall of 2019.

Date Published: 2018-09-19

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