The Slow Art
by Sierra Golden

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The Song of a Boat

        I first saw you
        in the bucket-dark
        dusk, a season
        of half-bit snow, you
        dressed in a shawl of it.
        Frozen lines creaked
        on cleats and then
        when spring climbed into
        summer, I opened
        your doors, tamped oakum
        into invisible seams,
        stoked the diesel stove,
        stripped you
        to bone-colored planks.
        I brushed gloss back
        into wood steamed
        till it bent, curved into
        the song of a boat.

        Salmon rang
        in the sound like bells
        we answered. What else
        could we do,
        the years going by
        while town discovered
        knick-knacks and meth?

        All those days
        I fished. I looked through
        your rigging
        to the ocean below
        and the night
        and you were the way
        in the dark I could see.

© 2018 Sierra Golden