Thoughts on the Lost Fountain in Cuzco

If I lived hundreds of years ago

I would beg passersby to exhume

the temple’s lost fountainhead,

where sacred water

once rose from unknown wells.

I would remind them we must nurture

our desiccated gardens

even if it’s too late.


I would curse those

who subtracted pious flagstones

and wish throats

filled with silt

to mourn forgotten waters

below Cuzco’s foundation.


I would apologize

to those who never quenched

thirst. Scold parents

for failing to recall the network

of gold pipes under

Cuzco’s haciendas and crooked streets.

How can our children ever taste

a fresh lick of rain offered

by the Gods?