Tell us, southern-
seeking birds, why wait
for frozen rain

to seize the weather-
maps—keep all
of North America shut in,

slipped or slipping
still, against these stultifying
walls? Better to head

north ourselves,
find there
those empty quarters

of creation still left to us.
To ensure survival
we’ll have to understudy

in the frosted fields,
apprentice to the semi-
silent woods. It’ll be just like

childhood’s first blast
of sneaky, freezing
wind, or that first time

you enjoyed being alone,
learning what it takes
to thrive: a will

like a winter
or not at all—
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