There are just three sounds in this whitewashed landscape.
My breath coming in sharp fog-bursts
As I move.
Inhale and exhale,
Inhale and exhale —
It condenses in the frozen air.
When I stop, add a fourth
The pounding heart,
And rhythm and wind.
Now move again.
Snow lines each branch,
And not a bird to be seen.
But a red-tailed hawk —
Thick-feathered in his
Wintry watcher’s coat —
And then high,
To settle in a nearby tree.
He watches my progress
And looks for the tunneling under-snow creatures
And I marvel at this:
That just as I add a manmade shroud
To hide my form under warmth and weight,
Your very bones are revealed.
Their starkness cuts me to the core —
This dark, organic architecture —
Once hidden in deep-green and humid cloak.