The Woman Who Loved Water

by John Olson

I hear the woman upstairs running water. But that's incorrect. I should say the woman upstairs is running from water. She loves water. And water loves her. She loves cooking and doing dishes but especially running water. She runs water all day doing dishes, doing laundry and taking showers. This has been the pattern for years. Running water. Loving water. And now the water is in love with her and chases her all over the apartment. She barely gets any sleep. Water doesn't sleep. Water occasionally sleeps in ponds in the forest, but mostly water is busy doing other things, like running onto sand when it becomes an ocean and grows deep and restless or tumbling over rocks in the mountains when it comes bounding down from the regions where men dig into the earth seeking gold and silver. And now when water takes the form of a current coming out of a kitchen tap or a bathtub faucet and helps with cooking and getting clean it has been so loved by this woman that it awakened and turned ferocious as it sometimes does and chases the woman around her apartment. And sometimes she laughs and sometimes she cries and the water comes out of her eyes and moves slowly down her cheeks humbly and accepting as it is when soaked into mops or boiling in a pot and rising out of this world as steam.