published in Ottawa by above/ground pressI. EmbarkingShould my point of departure be the dustto which I will return? Or the water of whichI am composed? OrI’m told the poet asked, are birds freefrom the chains of the skyway?So I depart from air.One accustomed to the sea takes not longto trust air’s buoyancy.So let breath bethe place we start from. Let the sunrise in our wake and our ship shudderas we descend through cloud.The river below, a forked black tonguedarting through the snow, I namedfor the patron of cooks, put to death on a grill.The maps I drew four centuries agoI compare with land from the vantage of birdsand am not dissatisfied.
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Abby Paige is a poet, performer, and freelance writer whose work has appeared in the United States and Canada, most recently in ottawater #9. Her solo show, Piecework: When We Were French, has toured in New England and Quebec. She received her MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars and is a former Fulbright scholar.
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