to read it by signs: melt water,
boulder clay, floor gradient.
1950s farming remnants, eroding
their way toward some simulacrum
of granite: this faux-reversal, as light
is slow to make it
across the valley: five stone steps, invisibly
waiting at the burnt-down doorway.
as a river wanders beside it, along
no bridges but the pre-
history of wood: Prumnopitys taxifolia.
Podocarpus ferrugineus. Dacrydium
cupressinum. as light unclasps
the flowers, their clenched
hands, opens the words
for them, as transcriptions. as
the valley becomes, as budded
in that audible stopping
of centuries here, in their radiant fists, each
as a moment’s smallness, opened: