I am not healing the way I should.
From a distance the fog is smoke –
same gray hazy-plumed howl. It is there and not there,
bloated middle then disappearing
without resolve. I know there is no origin,
no fire, only the wet exhale of spruce-fir
and oak. Still I want another reason
for the white halos that crown
the mountains, for why I always feel
I am here and not here, why
a barbed vine knots around my womb, thistled
twinge that wakes me. The mountains ask why
I won’t come back. Because I have always run
heart first into a fire and there is no fire.
Because the thing I tried to kill is still
slivered inside of me like iron shavings: scraps
of a life I did not want and I want
to crash so hard I send a shiver
through the mountains’ jagged vertebrae.