Work

With it

With it

 

The rushing river paid us no heed, with water so busy to do it all again

Fast and deep and cold

And in the respite of the eddy, sat on stone shaded by the sun

Quenching our thirst and watching it run

 

Below the punctured canopy that engineers the trance

We walked and waded through salal and swords

Enwrapped in sunbeams and shadows

Past fallen pews that nurse the story on

 

Forgotten treasures for happy hands dyed blue

Blackcaps, thimbles, huckleberries too

White capped knuckles rise, framed in fir

Where paper still beats rock

 

Every sinew reaching

Tired and joyous

Waiting to be found in the sanctuary of alpine meadows

Later lost in the silence and the rapture

 

Ancient highways woven above valleys still intact

Vast and reassuring

On a seabed suspended

I will tarry there, not tethered to the tiresome 

 

Just as before, coming down from Ben Vorlich

Caught in her sights and sat stoned by the peat black burn

Forever then, with a blue backpack belonging

To where the man picked up the feeling and put it down

 

And walks down the road with contentment’s black face

Past big cheer and stories, the farmers bales, rolled in ritual

Healing by hedgerows and looking for the eternal brae

How I miss my glad friend, over fields and fences

 

Now it’s in the new mornings and the old stories they bring

Where the harlequins cut, and the killdeers sing

On the restless shore, the tested lobster creel

Watching the big boats, silhouettes stuck on the cold rolled steel

 

Where freshly milled cedar stirs the senses, will later paddle the water

Dawn streams through lights, mullions shadows on yesterday’s efforts 

With steam and slip, bend and lap

Where hands were made for working, in a place devoted

 

There’s no champagne for a skin on frame

Just the sweat on my brow and a whole feeling remain

Among the beachcomber’s stall of timber and kelp

Bodies move and flow, socked in fantastic grey

 

Let it master the sail, let it bend to contain

With good feeling in store, let us go there again

Let’s be a plain member, indomitable like the sun

Just as the herring spawn, and the salmon run

 

Like the ptarmigan’s plumage, like the warbler’s call

Like the mountain hemlock, who tipped their hats to it all

(2019)

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