Summer 1986 • Vol. VIII No. 3 Poetry |

Through Marshland

In this field are beginnings, green heartsthat bear violets, shadow-loving sorrel. Their green is sleek with the memory of ice;even now they are separate as flowers. I too am a sort of leaf; I have two hearts,and my body is the globe where a new child winters. Snow-swollenstreams run underfoot. My heels sink in last year's grass. So much has grown over.From the footbridge, a year ago, we gave the ashes of our firstborn to the water.When I walk here, the twined, wet branches of the beech trees comfort mewith their lines of darkness. It is a slow learning. I am only myself,what I know, what I love. Some days, I am immense with strength,a tree listening to the murmur of its tap root.A stillness enters me. Or it is my feet going where they want to go,and I follow, through marshland, over the matted stalks.And suddenly there is the gold globe of the marshflower,its five distinct petals rising like suns out of the water.

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