Why They Went
that men might learn what the world is like at the spot where the sun does not decline in the heavens.
Frost bitten. Snow blind. Hungry. Craving fresh pie and hot toddies, a whole roasted unflippered thing to carve. Craving a bed that had, an hour before entering, been warmed with a stone from the hearth. Always back to Eden—to the time when we knew with certainty that something watched and loved us. That the very air was miraculous and ours. That all we had to do was show up. The sun rolled along the horizon. The light never left them. The air from their warm mouths became diamonds. And they longed for everything they did not have. And they came home and longed again.
From Approaching Ice by Elizabeth Bradfield. Copyright © 2010 by Elizabeth Bradfield. Used by permission of Persea Books.
Elizabeth Bradfield is the author of Once Removed (Persea Books, 2015), Approaching Ice (Persea Books, 2010), and Interpretive Work (Arktoi Books, 2008).
Date Published: 2010-01-01
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/why-they-went