And water lies plainly
Then I came to an edge of very calm But couldn’t stay there. It was the washed greenblue mapmakers use to indicate Inlets and coves, softbroken contours where the land leaves off And water lies plainly, as if lamped by its own justice. I hardly know how to say how it was Though it spoke to me most kindly, Unlike a hard afterwards or the motions of forestalling. Now in evening light the far-off ridge carries marks of burning. The hills turn thundercolored, and my thoughts move toward them, rough skins Without their bodies. What is the part of us that feels it isn’t named, that doesn’t know How to respond to any name? That scarcely or not at all can lift its head Into the blue and so unfold there?
Excerpted from Capitivity by Laurie Sheck. Copyright © 2007 by Laurie Sheck. Used by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.