Scotopia by Mary di Michele

Beacon shining from the top of Mount Royal,
a cross, unblinking under Capricorn.

Beaver Lake is iced over. The ring
in his pocket stays in his pocket.

In the shadow of the red-tailed hawk, what’s left
of a crow is now just tail feathers and wings

splayed out in the arms of a maple. To look is
to look away. Where the earth is flat we forget

we walk on a planet, but, from the view
at the summit, we remember

we are not alone, married and unmarried
alike, the stellar bridegroom

orbiting above, astronaut or angel,
watches over us from the stratosphere.

In a flash — we see what he sees — the city
below from space: the mystery

illuminated. This island city — this
island, Earth. Animal or mineral,

we all bow to the darkness,
we all turn in the light.

from Bicycle Thieves by Mary di Michele, shortlisted for the 2018 Pat Lowther Memorial Award
ECW Press | 2017 | 96 Page | $18.95 | Purchase online

Poet, novelist, and member of the collaborative writing group, Yoko’s Dogs, Mary di Michele is the author of 12 books. She has won numerous awards, including the Confederation Poets Prize and the Malahat Review’s Long Poem Prize, and has appeared on shortlists for many others. Mary has been living in Montreal and teaching at Concordia University in the creative writing program for more than 25 years.