for Kathryn Madill
What shall we tell them?
That the sea froze under our mukluks
like stretched plastic, that tiny ice
seeds skittered on the blue pavement,
ringing like Inca bells. That the brash
plain was a white plate, a lazy Susan
maybe, or a snowy rodeo where
the sun lopes a yellow circuit, bright
show pony, curvetting on a long rein.
That a katabatic wind shawl spins
off the mountain, that the ice dome
gleams like a lantern, or the buttocks
of our bright blue perishable world.
That the women became feral there
and lost their language, that their sex
grew big and glistening in their dark fur,
the placenta red on the ice like a massacre.
© Bernadette Hall