March. His birthday arrives
and he is surprised by his own pulse.
The snow spreads across the valley,
but the willows will soon blossom
their soft fur before leafing.
Thaw after thaw
will free the river’s pent power.
All around there is energy.
For now, the cancer unbodied.
But what is left?
He is still full of dark matter.
His whole life
he’s shaped the land
or made something from nothing.
Whistled and sworn
while the hammer sounds,
even nailed a few caskets
for those who were good to him.
He doesn’t seem to know
he’s always been searching
for the end of darkness.
Only that he was claimed
by the raven he killed forty years ago.
He’s been waiting. He should follow.
Mistee St. Clair was born and raised in Alaska. She is the author of the chapbook. This Morning is Different, forthcoming August 2021. Her relation to place, ancestors, family, and the weather influence her writing. She lives in a temperate rainforest in Juneau, Alaska, and can be found at misteestclair.com.
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