Arriving Off Book

In late afternoon, a fog weaves through the leggy limbs of backyard pine and oak. So close and low, weighted with woodsmoke, I want to touch it. You, born of winter, what do you see?

There was a certain mastery in the beginning – an ease of openness, a pure stone awaiting its name. Now, there is only a white path deep through the woods, softening unto the earth. The melt arrives off book, off calendar. I open the windows to air out the house. For the first time in weeks, the smell of dirt and pine and wet bark. I gather it and rise. 

Notes and letters bridged a second path, another life, all those days ago. It isn't too difficult to go about one's day in absentia. Perhaps the calling will always be that of a missionary: here and not, a conduit to another way. I was possessed by it all though, you know?

now I am grounded
like red wine

but not


Opossum tracks glisten like little stars in the vanishing ice. I watch them walk away for hours and am satisfied when they disappear. While we sleep, everything will be replenished – snow, ice, tracks – the collusion says “now” and “not now.” What cannot be said remains and therefore, the metaphors stretch out longingly and abysmally and infinitely. We parted company in the mirror, you and I.

It's easier to say nothing – to work hard at going nowhere. The seeds become wet in all this receding and they begin swell in the feeder as the fog roils with a winter's intensity. Crossed legged, simple hearted, I have no questions to ask and no thing to offer –