I Have Been Calling Them
–written at a mountain firelookout
For a long time I have been calling them without reply.
I smell them in the DNA hills of my boreal bed
I see them waiting on a black forest coat of male arms
I hear them arguing, tongues flying in Native winds
I rub their dark feathers dipped in a dry Alberta stream
As I write in the rocky darkness to talk with them.
For a long time I have been calling them without response.
And after I saw the twirling Precision helicopter crash
After I ran downhill into the smell of crushed metal and dreams
After I touched a cold firefighter’s blue-winged lips
with the erratic cry of my breath, then I called them again
while walking alone in logged woods and for once
sixteen ravens landed then croaked and croaked lifting me
as we listened to our breath alight in tall evergreens.
Vivian Demuth is the author of the poetry chapbook, Breathing Nose Mountain, and the novel Eyes of the Forest. Her work has been published journals in Canada, the United States, Europe and Mexico. She hosts an annual Poetry on the Peaks event near a firelookout where she works. www.viviandemuth.wordpress.com