My Sudden Death: pushing the stroller to the lake
Canoeing here years from now, you will appear
half in, half out of this lake
                                                            where I’ve imagined you
drowned so many afternoons     — held by canoe,
you’ll lie back below the surface     the lake, too, an embrace
of your weight within that metal —
                                                                                    We’ve come to see
goslings push through thick reeds
a bounty after last spring
when the city poked a hole in every egg in every nest
                                                                                    After your birth
I wept reading of ancient vessels
found beside the bones of infants:
playful clay mugs shaped with nose spouts
and ear handles
to save orphaned newborns
or wean, the porous insides traced
with milk — sheep, cow, goat — and bacteria
deadly in the hollow rabbit or silly chin
                                                                                    I have tried
to give you what my body cannot                                   I have tried
to form a vessel you will keep near
                                                            and fill with what you need
to hold what seems a lake from above     a face straight on     as I held yours
imagining you tip     into yourself
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