to lead me to me
to lead you next
to colors all wet:
bark saturated brown,
where lichen scurries up the trunk
of a tree that needs it.
You make me wonder about thirst,
the way things work together.
Boughs once empty fill with birds
in rapid flickering flight until beat, wingbeat,
winged threat: a magpie I try to wish away.
I ask, do not disappear.
That is no kind of apology
and I have never been a forgiver.
The green part of me never leaves
however I find that it remains with you.
However I find it in you
you must remember I am not a soft woman.
You’ll seek the mother in me
but expect to see splinters,
Together we have never been so alone,
like ladders, like messengers with another
answer. The ink-stained hand holds
heartache no longer. It’s been set
and pressed down, mapped & scattered."
[Joan Naviyuk Kane, "Late Successional"]