Clearcut

Stillstop wonder, this
overtone rockfall, your
blonde cheek flat against
the passenger seat glass
tires teething the Coquihalla
pulling this junebug wagon further in
to the slopesmile belly of the Canadian Rockies.

Look, {foxheart}! I say.
This is my North
[I let the tinsel of our name rest on my tongue
just a moment longer, before –]
where I have every memory of growing
and none of getting old
where the gold summon of summer
knew its way around my smile
where escaping never looked like anything
but a well-timed long weekend,
and an ache for woodsmoke

this is where I went
when my heart was full of go

I turn the wheel to match
the clean wound of the road,
a navy strap slips down my shoulder and
before I can, your quickdraw
fingers have replaced it, you are not
used to shotgun, not used to
not calling the shots at all
your tired skin acquiesces and simply gives in
to the headrest and the steel sky

my free hand traces your neck
with the same fervour as I dreamed this tableau
finds its way through your hair
hoping to recapture all the seconds lost
to poor signal, to full schedules, to the busy
we tried to love through

I’ve wanted to drive through these mountains
since I was a little girl
wanted to love someone
the way these peaks love both
their dense brush and clearcut
like a bowing down to the absence of
choice
in knowing that we are given over
to the ugly and the real
and the everything sacred
in the distance.

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