for a grandson, unborn
A house in a ‘shoebox’: pitched roof, gable ends,
breeze through a tiny window teasing the snowy
Priscillas. Unseated buses, tool sheds: versions
of a child’s first drawing. It’s learning the tricks,
owners say. Tables that fold, unfold into beds;
a spice rack slid out with a switch. A single place
for books, clothespins, rubber boots. Precious
sleight of hand.
My first house was a Hudson Bay blanket draped
over living room chairs. Crouched in a cramp
of yellow red green, my flashlight unlocked shadows:
lamplight into moon. Yip and howl of the neighbour’s
dog: a putative wolf. My brothers’ flailing limbs
in tag-team tussle shot out lightning, eerie timbres
in the deep-woods night.
Breathe the air, drink the drink, Thoreau says.
You have taught me. We were told, probably,
you would not survive; your liquid barge too small,
come loose from its moorings. But I have seen you –
booster view from the ultra-sound wand – arms
and legs unfolding, folding in. As if you imagined
this; spied beyond prediction a bucket, a length