Night cups us like a match in dusky hands,
its skin reeking of kelp and fish.
The sea we sliced this morning
as if the skiff was diamond,
lies calm and whole,
a flat black stone, again.
With no stars to compass by, we know
this is not home
but a border crossed, uncharted
territory, maps here dreamed
from memory, moving over
hummock, salt, and ice.
Ahead of us, the icy slosh, its salt and
its indifference honeycombing
bones, hungry seagulls diving
at its nickel mirror. Tide, out
now. Only a thin and deeper
gray delimits water from the sky.
At our backs, a sprawling bog of solitude
and beyond that ladders
of cold and slippery light.
Browsing in blackberries,
the bear lifts up its crimson mouth
and all ways look the same.