The creek don't rise

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The expression "...the creek don't rise" is an American slang expression implying strong intentions subject to complete frustration by uncommon but not unforeseeable events. It presumably evokes occasional and unpredictably extreme rainfall in Appalachia, that has historically isolated one rural neighborhood or another temporarily inaccessible on several or many occasions. It is sometimes thought that the word "Creek" instead refers to the Creek people, but this is not the case.[1][2]

Classic versions of its use tend to be along the lines of "The good Lord willing, and creek doesn't rise"—i.e. "If God so wills, and as long as intense rain does not wash away bridges or parts of dirt roads, or cover roads too deeply for safely following them." It may take the form of real or mock dialect, in variations like "... Lor' willin' an' th' crick don' rise."

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Bergeron, Kat (8 July 2017). "'Lord willin' and the creek don't rise!' But do creeks rise? Ah, wordplay". Sun Herald. Retrieved 15 January 2020.
  2. ^ "Lord Willing and the Creek Don't Rise". A Way With Words. 20 May 2012. Retrieved 15 January 2020.