Mossy rock from the railroad age spanned the river:
always mud, always puddles, ferns, and me.
A deer spoke to me, had nothing good to say
in those scared black eyes. I ran my canoe
down the river like a skinny ten-speed
through the town orchard, like my skinny
frame diving into Pawtuckaway, like baptism—
lingering in this liquid grave to know cold’s heavy arms
holding me one night longer. Instinct kicked my feet
and stretched my fingers toward the light to breathe
and fall from here like there was nowhere else to go.