for Eve Brackenbury
Frozen rivers slow twin tails,
Ice stoppering gills
Silver and splendid
We leap the floes
Delivering goddesses to shore:
Sharers and renewers,
We are fishers of men.
Love is what comes
Of this dead season;
Shedding our scales
We tread the land,
Melting ice beneath our feet
So it runs back into the earth
We are the life-bringers.
We make our table on snow banks.
We are what awaits around March’s bend
When standing pools reflect again
Only blue skies.
Here, twigs might just be the strongest material,
The cradle of generations. Bits of trash and hair
Dangle between power lines and dogwood blossoms,
The robins not yet driven out by the stench of our bonfires,
Indifferent to the ash of their infant homes.
Lauren Scharhag is a writer of fiction and poetry. She is the author of Under Julia, The Ice Dragon, The Winter Prince, and West Side Girl & Other Poems, and the co-author of The Order of the Four Sons series (with Coyote Kishpaugh). Her work has appeared in multiple magazines and anthologies. She is the recipient of the Gerard Manley Hopkins Award for poetry and a fellowship from Rockhurst University for fiction. When not writing, she can be found hanging out in prisons or embarking on art pilgrimages. A recent transplant to the Florida Panhandle, she lives with her husband and three cats. To learn more about her work, visit: www.laurenscharhag.blogspot.com