Loon Cries

Unless there is a loon cry in a book, the poetry has gone out of it. - Carl Sandburg

Three loons appear in this poem, twoon one side of the canoe, oneon the other, but

not stable. One drops downto nothing, emerges two minutes latertwenty feet away, quavering

his black beak's cold criesacross us to the others like a naturalbridge: oo-AH-hoo. Three loon cries

arise in this poemfrom a hollow carved outof itself, the slosh of what it says

to itself, not to us.We four in the canoe sitin the open AH, riding low as loons.

No one knows who feels what, or how much. The grievingsyllables lie over us, untouchable

oo-AH-hoo, yodeledoo-AH-hoo. Oh Lord, if we knewwhat we can take from each other, and what

we have to leave alone,if we knew which maniacal divesthe universe was thinking of all along.

by Fleda Brown

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