The bats come on at dusk, playing between
the pine trunks, shadow puppets cast against
the lake’s silvering surface. I hold you: harp
and harpist, bodies bound. All day power-
lines above our heads sizzled in the heat,
a million insects sifting to the ground
in a shower of fine wings. Your absence
is impossible, unimaginable.
You can’t ever be gone from me—a prayer
I hold under my tongue like a dark pill
I’m afraid to swallow. Not like my friend’s
baby, not like the child lost in the river’s
teeth. Where is the bear I promised you
we’d see? We must look again tomorrow.