Winter, Midpoint

28 February 2021

By Philip Kuepper

We are at that point,
in winter, when even
the birds seem uncertain
how to react, what to do.
They stand about in the shallows
looking,
looking lost.  They appear to be
waiting for a sign, like the rest of us.
The sky is opaque, thickly so.
The river is the color of semen,
a river not moving.  Ironic, isn’t it,
(a graveyard stretches out along the river)
the grey of semen, and the grey
of tombstones are the same shade,
both of which have chiseled,
in one way or another, one’s name
on them, which is proof
love is the point.  Otherwise,
why, on earth, bother.

And, boats?  They sit out of water
on sawhorses at marinas.
They sit wrapped in tarps,
to keep from being
corroded by the elements,
to keep from becoming
redundant between the seasons.
A seagull has perched on the prow of one,
and not the stern, suggesting
a beginning, and not an ending?
It is a laughing gull,
a laugh, this time, not on us,
but on time, itself.

(23 February 2021)

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