Mayapple Press is a small literary press founded in 1978 by poet and editor Judith Kerman. We celebrate literature that is both challenging and accessible: poetry that transcends the categories of "mainstream" and "avant-garde"; women's writing; the Great Lakes/Northeastern culture; the recent immigrant experience; poetry in translation; science fiction poetry.
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Judith Kerman – Easternmost West-Flowing River – Lyrics

the hills around it lie
humped under their blankets
black-green forests
stare at their faces in its mirror
grey around the temples

deep wrinkles
between the ground down hills
winter squats over them
but water still flows under ice

easternmost west-flowing river
cuts the shale and slate
weathers out trilobites
dusty grey casts of what
once crept along the sea floor
faceted eyes still staring

in a small cardboard box
treasures from when
I picked rocks by the west-flowing river
my own face in the mirror

Music and poem © Judith Kerman

Back to the Written On Water Bonus CD lyrics page

Jerome Rothenberg – A Bodhisattva Undoes Hell – Lyrics

Because he saw the men of the world ploughing their fields, sowing the seed, trafficking, huckstering, buying and selling, and at the end winning nothing but bitterness, for this he was moved to pity

To the figures bathing at the river
Jizo appeared

The sky was full of small fishes
The bodies of the men
twisted in an afternoon
when earth and air were one

With Hell a hard fact
the double lotus
brought the son of heaven
down among us
And the bathers showed their hands
that bore the marks of nails

What Jizo said
was this

Let’s bury their lousy hammers
My people
are tired of pain
The world’s been crucified
long enough

The rain fell gently on their wounds
The women lugged
big platters of shrimp
to the bathers
when Jizo’s diamond
caught the sun

The rest of us
sat at the stone windows
overlooking the river
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Jerome Rothenberg – Old Man Beaver’s Blessing Song – Lyrics

All I want’s
a good

Hee hee ho ho
Hee hee ho ho
Hee hee ho ho

Back to the Written On Water Bonus CD lyrics page

Pete Seeger – Where the Old Allegheny and Monongahela flow – Lyrics

I live in that city that is built amongst the hills,
Where smoke is always pouring from the big rolling mills;
And steamboats on the rivers go towing to and fro,
Where the old Allegheny and Monongahela flow.

Back to the Written On Water Bonus CD lyrics page

Written On Water – Bonus CD Lyrics

Written On Water Bonus CD

Here are the lyrics (where known) to the tracks from the bonus CD included with Written On Water: Writings About the Allegheny River

Texts for items with asterisks (*) are included in the book already.

1. “Easternmost West-Flowing River” poem and music written and performed by Judith Kerman.

2. “Old Man Beaver’s Blessing Song” written and performed by Jerome Rothenberg.

3. “He’s Here” poem and music written and performed by Jim Kacian. *

4. “As Long as the Grass Shall Grow” written and performed by Peter LaFarge.

5. “You Cannot Step Twice into the Same Stream” written and performed by Francine Sterle. *

6. “Hand in Hand”—Seneca Dance Songs, performed by the Allegany Valley Singers.

7. “Breaking Up Ice in the Allegheny” performed by Mike Seeger. (We have no lyrics for this song. If you know them, please get in touch)

8. “Conewango Time” written and performed by R. Virgil Ellis. *

9. “The Invention of Pittsburgh” written and performed by Maggie Anderson. *

10. “A Place

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