There are still some places on this earth
where, driving into the hills just ten miles
from the nearest town, if you killed
the engine and turned off the headlights
you would find yourself at the bottom
of a well of darkness. Perhaps it is too late
or you don’t realize I hadn’t planned
on coming this far down the road,
but here we are. We could have taken
the other exit, the one littered with rest
stops, vending machines dispensing packets
of sugared goods all day and night, glass
vaults offering the sliver of a chance to lift
a cheap stuffed animal out of the felted pile—
But whether or not you really meant to sign
on for this ride, we’re too far inland now.
Cell phone signals come through only
intermittently, and on this stretch the houses
are three or four miles apart. Who’ll break
the silence first? Back there, I saw a painted shingle
that said to watch for deer crossing. Even in this
desolation, so many signs of life, as though they
didn’t require our noticing. If we sat here
through the last icy hours of night, we might see
at first light, juncos on the snow between
the cattails. Or Dürer’s young hare, soft brown
in watercolor and gouache, still for a moment
before disappearing in the grass.
With all my heart oh how I wish he
would take all the darkness with him.
—Luisa A. Igloria
In response to today’s Morning Porch entry.