Leaving mountains and concrete and pollution,
confusion and mayhem beyond management,
I was eighteen and moving
far away from small minds and big noises,
ignorance of the intelligent forsaken
for silence of trees and waters
and loss of language.
Not where I was raised, but undeniably the place I grew up;
granite soil and swarms of biting flies,
redolence of creatures in rut echoing unchecked animal drives
holding the key to my liberation,
though I did not grasp that brass ring
until two daughters and stark betrayal hammered it
into my frightened hands.
There is no safety in security.
This I learned very early on, and so sought the edges
to be both stricken and rewarded;
aurora borealis spreading wings across star-pocked skies,
call and companionship of loons ululating
across placid crystal waters, defining the advent
and retreat of winter ice, bringing me back
to my roots in terra firma.
How uncommonly life follows the trajectory
of birth, umbilicus pulsing with ether and anesthesia,
infant strangling and backside-first,
metal tongs pulling me, kicking and screaming,
into this world.