Because the crab apple tree is not incarnate,
but a shape cut from sky, you simply pull
its trunk a little wider and step through.
Once on the other side, you turn, take stock,
lean on a bough, and look back at it all.
So strange to catch your own life unawares,
to see your home, and those you love, move
through those rooms, lost in their own routines:
the empty semaphore of making beds,
the sacrificial steam of cooking pots;
and it looks tender, but secure, less vulnerable
than it felt when you were there, and slow.
So now, like a birder in a hide, you hold
your breath to catch yourself, out of the bath,
pausing naked at the window, staring back.
The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.