~Ode to the tribe,

women I returned to east,

and women I left at the mountains




Remember the slender neck of goose

as she carries her weight

on wind, craning


to tundra. She nests and becomes mother,

then south returns to self,

ever the tide.


Since a child among the pines, I’ve heard the call

my mother beckoning me

to witness the migration.


What strain did she hear,

my mother?


Does the goose’s appeal ever

signal serenity

as she rides the current homeward?


and which is homeward?


I know the ache of taking flight,

Seeing land you love fall away from your fingers,

however outstretched.

The resolute love of both artic mountains, eastern harbors.


Standing aside my mother,

Watching geese bellies glide overhead,

their emphatic voices summoning,

I did not first see the banded wings.

Unaware the weight they carry,

how home folds inward, tucked

into the hearts of those we love, and wanders.