Published on Academy of American Poets (


The apple was not an apple when the rains came
The grave spurned the groundskeeper’s shovel when the rains came

No sacrament    no scripture        There were no reservoirs
save an ark beneath the steeple when the rains came

First the river wouldn’t fill             Then the valley’s hills
rose like the back of a camel when the rains came

The piano pursed its mouth of strings      The tenor kissed
his weathered hymnal when the rains came

There was no weathered landscape           there were neither
the hanging gardens nor Babel when the rains came

Lying on his back            the shepherd fanned his arms and legs
No one told him he couldn’t impress an angel when the rains came

our glosses / wanting in this world    Can you remember?
My name in Hebrew means Beloved or      blissful when the rains came


Copyright © 2017 by David Welch. “Reservoirs” originally appeared in The Cincinnati Review. Used with permission of the author.



David Welch

David Welch is the author of Everyone Who Is Dead (Spork Press, 2018) and It Is Such a Good Thing to Be in Love with You (GreenTower Press, 2015). He lives in Chicago.

Date Published: 2018-08-24

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