Winter trees cracking the sky.
And daffodils. I told you
I would never leave.
Spring barges into the apartment.
Birds drop from branches,
now with bud, now with leaf,
to strike brisk air with fresh wings.
You never see the moment
it happens. Fingers make bruises
bloom under my skin. Change:
A stairway into a room you can’t go back from.
Into deeper colors. Into stones.
Change into the thing you want to be,
forcing your life to conform
until the surface shatters.
Bird-calls. The ice-locked lake
returns overnight. All it takes
is one warm day for the conceit
to be overthrown, for the crackup
of thin floes to begin. You see
it coming, but are nevertheless surprised.