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Beaver People

ISSUE:  Autumn 1962

Beaver people are trying to figure out the good water.
All winter they feel a dark deep touch
around their house. “Somewhere,” one says, “there is
the good water.” But another one, drowsing with a paw
over the edge of the bunk, just says,
“But how could it be different, very much?”

Around them sweep currents from up-country—
whatever happened there: leaves, dirt, a spring
that flowed a slow promise every day last summer.
To live—real—in their house is to belong to all that,
yielding to it a face of many-muscled confession: where
you have been—a face that never avoided anything.

Beaver people swirl that scenario for us; trail
before our faces too a world streaming 
ready for our kind of knowing, a river in thought-color.
They declare the Renaissance in any patch of alders.
While we drowse, a paw flips to all of us drowned here
in our own pageant, under this ice, dreaming.


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