Sunday, 12 February 2012

Sunday Poem


So named because I’ve heard
people here changed
islands by season, wintered

on the South and on the hinge
of spring swung to this North
Island, exposed to the slap

of the sea, then back. No one on the path.
Past small graveyards I sleep
by sea urchin skeletons, give

no thought to the phalanx
of cloud coming on. No grief,
except my pail lacks

the partridgeberries I seek.
In Chaffey’s Cove, lobster traps
of broken slats and twine slack

with age, perhaps ripped
by tide, invite my hand inside:
bedroom, kitchen, parlour

where they took bait, and died.
Except the small one who, lured
by herring, tangled in the rooms,

jerked toward a slitted heaven
and found a hatch, a moon
to slip through into a haven

of sea, flux in the gulch, in
and out, applause of water
over stones and surge, again,

again, no house, no mortar,
feast of red-berries, heave
of tide, like Plath’s stunned flies

I believe in heaven, here.

From The New Canon: An Anthology of Canadian Poetry (2005) by Barbara Nickel.

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