Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Phases

Ich glaube an Nächte

Watching the garden winter under the moon, 
we think of the brown animals
under the earth. Or the bulbs 
of the jonquils frozen there 
with their orange eyes clenched in coils.
White and silent night, the air cold as iron 
and the lake like an old woman under a blanket. 
We gave your grandma marijuana tea 
to lull the cancer clenched in her like fists.

Our legs are weak after making love 
but we walk across the solid lake. 
We're wrapped in the husk of a Bay blanket, 
the air smells like wool and our heat 
billows around us, animal. The lake 
clicks as we walk, a photograph 
curling up at the edges. Far under
hibernating fish drift in the current, 
their bodies curving back and forth, 
while above them the moon 
glows on the snowless patches--
a white heart expanding under the ice. 
And in our blanket, our bodies 
hold the shapes of the people 
whose cells we slept in for generations.

Credit


Reprinted from Lake Nora Arms with the permission of House of Anansi Press. Copyright © 1993, 2001 by Michael Redhill. All rights reserved.

Author


Michael Redhill

Michael Redhill is a Canadian poet and novelist. He is the author of Light-Crossing (House of Anansi, 2001), Asphodel (McClelland and Stewart, 1997), Lake Nora Arms (Coach House, 1993), and Impromptu Feats of Balance (Wolsak & Winn, 1990), among others. He is an editor of the literary magazine Brick and lives in Toronto.

Date Published: 1993-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/phases