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The Straits

Ledum more familiar than Labrador tea,
another misnomer for rhododendron
in matted growth beneath the most shallow
depth of snow on record in all our winters.

Pausing upbluff from the edge of the ice
I broke from branches leaves to pin between
my teeth and tongue until warmed enough
for their fragrant oil to break and cleanse

you from me. Somewhere in a bank of fog
beyond the visible end of open water, low
rounded hills were alleged windfeathered,
not capillary, nervous or venous in drainages.

In routes along the shore, forever slipping
under, I am reminded — in the city
one finds it simple to conceive nothing,
a system, and nothing but a world of men.
Posted 04/24/13
This is the final poem in my third collection, with the working title WHEN THE WORLD WAS MILK. -- If you like this poem, please consider supporting my project here: http://www.usaprojects.org/project/ugiuva_miuguru_a_i_am_from_king_island
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