After “Another Antipastoral” by Vievee Francis and for the Huron River

I want to put down what the river has awakened— hill girl rock sliding

down the mountain, floating a waterway that has always been inside me,


passage slick and hidden. How could I ignore this slipping, the ease of it?

Blood pulse, just as underestimated. Look, a heron is carving herself


into foreground, pause before fierceness. We are just as prehistoric.

See what I have forgotten— body as oar, a boat’s pathway, coursing.


There is a way beyond us. Water’s edge, an invitation. I have river too

much in my core, its plunge and sweep like a sob ready to burst. Here


joe pye weed’s pink fists, curly eel grass sunk and spiraled. My heart—

tuber of duck potato in the silted muck, pickerelweed, spiked arrow,


cattail driven deep in my marrow. There a solitary trumpeter drifts,

separated, but eventually gathering into cloud bank, dusk coming on.