On the worn cliffside trail, we’ve come apart
when we spot the eagle erect on a limb
at the point. The bulk of its body is nimble, dark
against the fog-smeared sky. Beneath us, cedar roots
twist regally, their buckling arches keep us slow.
Once, we roamed these woods for fairy homes
where twigs were beams, & roofs the skin of paper birch.
Up close, it is a different bird. Its long brown feathers
greased & ragged, its flight-stained face uncombed.
Below, the lake’s skin flexes gray & rolls. Sandstone bluffs
erase the waist of the cliffs. The jack pine thrusts its roots
through red rock; unfolds its long body angling over the water.
Needles shiver in the juniper breeze. I don’t know
if what’s below will hold us. In an instant, the eagle’s body
opens against the sky, hangs on the mist & disappears.
Annette Frost is a Boston-based poet and the Director of the Favorite Poem Project at Boston University, where she received her MFA in poetry. Frost’s poems have been published in numerous journals and anthologies including Epiphany’s The Writers Studio at 30, Strange Horizons, and Nature Inspired anthologies. She lives in Acton, MA, with her husband and their two cats. She believes in the importance of acknowledging both feelings and climate change.