Re-Pairing by Nancy Huggett

POEM TITLE: Re-Pairing POET NAME: Nancy Huggett POEM: A tag-team duet disassembled  by the liturgy of caregiving that binds  our days, we barely escape  the crumbling house, sick child, aging parents,  fractured friendships, demanding jobs.  You pack, I drive.  Fast. Mindless. East.  Away.  I exit suddenly. Park  on muddy verge. Drag you across  a spring-green field  toward the whiteness  of snow geese rising in fluid synchrony  at our intrusion, disintegrating  into sky. You turn back first. Wait  for me to follow. We merge  into traffic traveling east, each  siloed in silence, in awe, in cold.    After hours of straight tarmac,  the landscape wavers and hills  obscure the horizon and the way.  No longer set  on direction, end point, goal, we turn a corner.  The yellow inn arises  out of mist and lake.  Our room: a rustic extravagance of red and brown,  a view of water, a silver birch,  a quietude of twilight fog. We want nothing  other than to be still together.  No vigilance—for warning cough,  night-time stumble, urgent call—  just attention to each other. The soothing  silence of lake and rain and jazz lulling  us to trust the flames contained in fieldstone  fireplace towering two stories above us.  And looking out: two Canada geese soar  in black and tan majesty.  Land on ink dark lake. Just two.  A pair. When all have been ubiquitous.   We reach out to gently graze and grasp hands.  Let our books fall softly  into our laps, not worried about losing our places.  At dinner, a pair of muskrats glide along the shore as we feast on duck and arctic char.  Cocooned in five-star dinning and delight,  we watch their conjoined shadows move through liquid twilight.   Later, we make love slowly,  As if we have boundless time and space to explore the fissures and crevices of our bodies, our love.    We lie quiet in each other’s arms.  Watch birch-filtered moonlight drift in through the window. Hear the echo wail of two loons,  their yearning call to each other across the lake.   Then turn, the pair of us, as one, toward each other.  We need no other gift than this— our longing and responding—  to rebind us.   END OF POEM.  CREDITS AND BIO: Copyright © Nancy Huggett  Nancy Huggett is a settler descendant who lives, writes, and caregives in Ottawa, Canada on the traditional unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg people. Thanks to inspiration from the pandemic coffee sessions at Firefly Creative Writing, Merritt Writers, and not the rodeo poets, she has work out/forthcoming in Reformed Journal, Literary Mama, Syncopation, RE (An Ideas Journal), Prairie Fire, Pangyrus, and Waterwheel Review.