Halfway in

the stand of black birch

flecked red, pale mitts of leaf.

The battered stones

of a ruined cistern, a field

that once was tilled.

Then the drop

toward water, transformation

of path to plank,

a whirlpool down to shore.

Wooden turret

in an ocean of air.

O god the water.

Rippling prairie

of glass — the wind, the wind.

Unchanged world born of glaciers.

Distant white hides, scarred,

break surface: an arch

a swell of whaleskin.

Below water, out

of ears' reach a fierce

moan, the call.

The dipping into air

lung full of ocean —

mist, exhale — mingling

of sky and sea,

the insatiable darkness of the firs.