One of my hobbies is healing and when I forget this, it is I who appear to move and think so slowly one might fairly begin to doubt the regular occurrence of either; to with gaping eyes grope nonetheless as blindly as the screeching bat at objects lying at last before me; to play at guessing games as to their shape and purpose or, by jumping in, declare the water welcomed, wet and deep. I trust myself, yet pause to bleed and watch me in my dripping: am not beautiful, but incorporeal, having embodied everything we could not be, defend nor propagate given the current condition all of which have long since passed, ‘til I am evidence becoming. Do you remember throwing stones in the river just to hear the sound they made? I teach my children to make a wish, and Alley-oop's is building a house the whole world can live in, together–" despite having learned, as our family has, how hard it can be to love in close quarters with those we can't help but know. Spirit of glass fast hapless shattered; sucked from out your tight-lipped, bloodless disapproval over ways we have conducted Selves, as if through railroad ties and traffic signals we might discern the grade; the roll of tires on the pavement cannot betray the forces that propel us, here, but merely their collusion with the tearing of the wheel. When with one vicious “splunk” we cheer your arms and legs spread shocked, aloft; flung further than the chance you take at missing this, the depths of what was once inert and to us lost. I love my life among the splash and while I lie washing in the rapids, wish I might wear smooth as stone the skin still plied like folds into a paper fan; they tell me it is not my turn, rather am meant to swim and spout forth secret notes spent in the currents sped by promises and river spirits– to stand mud-footed on the bank unworried by the wind– and wondering how best to live up to this moment, realize presence is the only answer to stand the test of reverence passed here every morning. -- Think of me as I do you; my soft reprieve, my boundless longing. In yours, the touch of palms conspires to transport me to the realm of what one calls "opening up," when for me this part is easy: I’ve grown older pinned and cut to fill the corners of the board you poke at with your ball-point pin and an air of faint disgust at the impact of formaldehyde on the blooming blush of skin; while I more mindful opt to rot and burst forth from the faery’s ring after a night’s soft, secret rain to let you know what lies beneath is always, always waiting. It’s the losing I can’t tell, but as our death abates and what's left carrying weight are the cups of bare and bartering hands, my footfall intuits the logic of a surveyor’s line: a self-told place writ large with the price of both the scope of your mind and uncertain survival where I brood lax and languish steady; reap bird-song and the knowing hush of an undisturbed and last-relinquished canopy. -- Barefoot on the hard-packed earth I'm pleasured by the roots grown brazen from the ground as if it's what they're meant to; your rain rolls off my back like a thousand missives to reveal me to myself among a chorus of survivors we call wild roses. Strange vapors rise from the forest floor explained as the process of regeneration, but all I smell is sex; I want you to take me like the coyote eats the deer, one broken sinew between your teeth at a time while you suck the marrow from my bones I find so polished here it hardly pays to wash them in the river later, rubbing joints with sand. I see the purpose of murder in the hushed and ready smallness of children gathered at your feet, waiting for your downfall; will it be the wind that takes you–? blown basted by rain in the profligacy of storms– or a tepid campaign of heartwood gone wrong to beings we can't classify as belonging to any but their own. Either way, may we rejoice in your subjugation to this fucking you to death; join in eternal song the urgency of a soft and heaving cunt– she knows not what could be but only what she wants, contained by walls she demands felled by the overwhelmed and rush of creatures we can't see but will consume us. Help me be so fresh and clean, emerging from a tide of blood; anoint in me the scent of Balsam sap and leaves covered in an underside of down. Climb with me the fury I've felt from the height of white pine grandfathers; take from me the feeling that my family has departed, here, laying under fiddleheads announcing that the season of love arrives despite our best attempts to guard it. Deserve nothing we have found here but the right to stunning; colour your skin with the brunt of sun and the blush of mud we wipe like tears from the faces of babes bathed not in the space of words or intentions meant, but the places their gods made them. Custodians, like titans, spare no concern for the mortals they find underfoot; but still, the trembling aspens stand, unflinching in their right to line like stalwart waves of soldiers faced against the cavalry of creek beds– with crowns like this, we still grant our surprise they heavy, sudden fall along with grains too small to count in the passing tides of flood. Time captures all too quickly here the scope of what it claims in passing; but citizens decline its wrath by spending theirs not on its days but rather trains rushed overhead on imposing, alien bridges; casting your grain into the arms of ready, accidental cradles; catch us spitting up from death the life that theft awards us. -- We might chase lines of crackling quartz; discard our petty notions of a conspicuous life curated for eyes set like flames upon the cavities of a capacious status, asking: Who am I among you–? and ask whether our bellies are filled not at the hands of fate but by the time-honoured tradition of friends–? I watch what will become our common sorrow in the firm and steady countenance of daughters who have not yet begun to crumble as they grow; a five-year-old cannot relent beneath a weight they've not the shame to comprehend and so we revel in their company believing we might still come to deserve them (we will not). Like time travel, I carry yours the same way I did mine– "upsy-daisy, over-easy–!" tying them upon my back, and the flowers we weave into crowns evoke hers, a Being granted hands without half-heart to hold them in their plucking of bouquets from out what was the air until it's filled just with Her vision; set the table centrepiece'd where the toddler, righteous, knocks it over– arranging them into the shape of her own body pushing limits made to break it– like the time she fell down from the ledge she stands atop to wave goodbye to Daddy. I forget what it's like to show someone how to do something right; my teenagers confound me in the knowledge I live unrecovered from– the same mistakes you're making now, in not believing you can somehow make it on your own. The delusion's meant to prosper in a mind hard-wired for what we have here; someone to do the dishes for and a sticky note left on the cabinet door you keep your wine in reminding you were loved in absentia before bed-time; are welcomed in the morning, still (to make the coffee first, before I walk up on the deck to find you, cold and struck by hours you've not passed in rest). If I made a habit of having to be the person who could feel at ease here, how steady the decline of all my dashed and dashing hopes: to become less than invisible in a world full of motes we sweep aside fresh out of bed releasing hounds of pressure from our bladders; sunrise has chased us once again from heavy sleep in a bed your home and practice holds as if it were my own– and if "Altruism is being the love you want to receive in the world," here I am pouring vodka over clover harvested in tense anticipation of being so far away from here I can only hold it in a line of tiny one-ounce jars; distilling what's been gathered by the armful to dispense later ten tiny droplets at a time, living for months off the moment when Abi caught the chicken; pressed it fast against her body, half as heavy as her own.