When I am in a strange place,
the pain of our separation is conceptual.
I sit and play at guessing
how far away the thunderhead,
the dozing swayback horse.
The land is frocked in its pinkery.
I sit and rake three-finger brooms
through four-thick filipendula.
An alpine flower presses its nose
to the shadows on my skin.
Between altitude and elevation
the sky is one dish on a lazy Susan
with a chip in the shape of a moon.
It feels ethical to imagine you here,
a mandate from the poplar,
who is pushing her færie fluff.
The bed in the cabin is a little lozenge.
The hotwhite flurries strike the pane.
Quiet things happen in my black cotton dress.
In the virtuous mind,
secret eroticisms bask on their stones.
Yesterday the Snake River passed me
a dozen times more than the hours I drove.
Only once I stopped, for huckleberry ice,
my tongue’s unending want.