The New Season (Canada Geese)
A moment ago, I floated among the sedges—the ones with roots that taste
like the caps of mushrooms—the water smelling of rusted steel. Goslings
pushed their tiny bodies across the current, following their mother’s wake
like beads of dew running across a spider’s thread. Then I tasted the delicate,
warm dust, bitter with the sap of unfamiliar trees. It fell around us
like a new season.
Maybe it is the sun pausing like a hot ember in the clouds, or maybe
it’s the scent of burnt feathers mingled with pine, but my sister says
the word first. My call follows hers—like the goslings following
their mother—and then we are all calling with our blackened mouths,
the memory lifting us like a many-winged river from the earth. I glide higher
among the flock, heart pounding, and as I do, the sun itself flies down to rest
on the water, fanning its red wings.