They continued down the quayside
And I was drowning (the story’s weightier that way)
Lapped into the breathing tide of Lake Ontario
And from my scant inches of water I could see them
Moving away and away in a not-far distance
And I shouted and they turned and ran back to me.
Not drowning, not drowned, I was hauled up
In their fright to dry gravel, and they blamed each
Other for what might have been, love as wrath –
I remember boat engines on the greeny lake, their
Cranky burr, their impertinence. The sounds small
Waves make over small stones, water in my shoes.
The Huron call it Lake of Shining Waters –
My wretched baptism fell into myth, assumed the
Nature of unhappening. It hung in the branches
Of mind like snow or stars, brief as fog. Child-feet
Impressed upon the bruised skin of such immensity:
A child’s shout as ferocious as god-breath, as storms.