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Caitlin Thomson

What Remains

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My son is submerged in the river water by a stranger,
till he becomes something else, unknown to me, just another man
of God. If I saw him now he would be wearing
shoes and pants, shirts, a coat even.

Though I don’t see him. Everything around me breathes,
yet I am alone. There is solitude in the coffee I brew
in the morning, the sky I go to sleep under, but the day
itself is full of motion. I hunt and search, dig and store, pluck and bury.

I go to that river in the evening and there I watch the silver flick
of fish slipping over rocks, in the shallows, the river thick with them.

Missing Amusements

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My goal was for time to pass unnoticed.
Killing hundreds of digital men in an hour,
could make that hour collapse into one breath.
An exhale, an inhale, then dinner. What was frozen
made hot in a matter of minutes. Time invisible
again, as I ate peas and fried chicken.
A whole day without time gnawing at me,
a dream I seemed to grow closer to
every year. Even the chore of waiting
for the doctor partially replaced
by my phone and fingers. In the
mirror, I could see the skin around my
eyes change, the hair in my beard grow
lighter. I had no painting in my attic,
but mirrors can be taken down from
the wall, and placed in the attic to grow dusty.

Without Wind there is Silence

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Always the self here. A body,
an ache. I can see so many
pines from here, some living

though brittle, others browned orange
with heat from pointed top,
to long shaky last branch.

Is my tongue as dry as that pine and
somehow alive? I do not use it much.
There is nothing to say to myself

that requires words, there is little to
eat here, to drink. My body grows weary
from the view, each pine alone on the

hill in the day, but at night, the few
I can see, become one clump
of the forest, I remember.

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