Here nothing snarls but trees,
the sky white gray and lucid,
water flowing in all forms.
The land absent of what is missed most,
only old homes and moss hanging
off the graying bark of apple trees.
The hills don’t hide the world beyond,
but the fog does. What here, I wonder,
could fill the womb of home, familiarity,
a sense of place? What could stand for
mountains and trees
thick with snow and ice,
the world a white yawn
that shimmers like teeth;
homes of plywood splintered
paint the color of fireweed;
dogs singing in the long dark;
the dawn so fresh and confident
that I may look out the window and say
“Today I will climb that mountain.”
But what I really can say is
“Today I will write a poem.”
And I am here, in this place
of gray and green as many shades
as names for snow. Here, I say,
knock mud from your boots,
come have tea from rain, listen, listen,
my body thunders with longing.
Brush against me and I will quake.