nature poem

i am watchful like my survival depends on it
(it doesn’t. press bluetooth button: “connect.”)
watchful like the caribou whose antlers
are just a tangle of bone find out that
reindeer are just captive caribou
go for a walk.

notice the sears sign
matches the gray mountain.
realize with a pang that
you would have kissed
him if things had been
slightly different.

think how there are worst places to end up
than the coffee shop at the bottom of the mountain,
that the northern lights come in every color
but the first thing they make you think of are
screen savers and atoms only visible
after midnight, before dawn. no more memorable
than dreams, no less.

on your walk, the moose
disappears into the snowy forest. you see the parting
of the trees more clearly than you see the moose itself but
that animal running from you reminds you yes
you’ve been to alaska, you’ve seen a moose
dancing lights, sun never quite
risen, mountains rising through mist.

alaska’s chill, you think, pulling on
your least favorite layer and like a ghost
you watch the sun gloriously
sink like melting butter.


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