by Megan Baxter
I found one of the old night birds
in the trees above the sugar house, starving,
it refused the trap-killed mice I brought,
hunter, whistling weight in the dark.
I laid their bodies below the tree
until I came upon him, frozen
knocked from his perch by the wind,
hollowed, hardened by death and frost,
the thick black centers of his eyes
fixed past me, devouring the light.
For Hannah, Age 15
You watch morning
come over the mountains
straining at the banks of night
as the shells
set out north up river,
breaking the surface ice of spring.
The hands blister and open
along the oar.
On the shores
we call out
as you pull into the final meter,
glowing with sweat,
blond as summer,
in the long light of sunrise
crowned by dark pine bows.
Megan Baxter works at a 40-acre organic farm in Vermont. A graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy, she completed a BFA in Creative Writing at Goddard College. She has been published in the Georgetown Review and was the runner-up in this year’s Indiana Review ½ 5K contest.