In a Lock of Hair

In a lock of hair becoming a spine-like tendon,
in stagnant blood might I find—I don’t know.
Liquid, light, glass grooved and lashed together:

a brown feathered and horned-angel owl,
damned in a part of breast-cusped armpit.

Where spindle, shanks, polished by gray silt, dash
ruined my middle chest, caves in. When a wasp
nest unravels the gray paper like a head of lettuce.

A corroded filament of a white bear’s heart
shines in warm snow like frozen fireflies stuck
in the air still yellow. A bulldozer digs the taiga.

A Nuwuk whale captain hones the shoreline,
wishes the whale-people to come: scouts first,
middle males, females and young then older whales.

Shades and drifts of tangled oceans, labyrinths in
navigational mapping turn upon itself like dragon’s tail.
Right ventricle then left ventricle boils like copper in vats.

Radiation of a lumbar sack and coccyx, wires drip dip
coils, inverted cones, dug for sifts & wood black peat soil &
as five red robins’ beaks funnel earthworms in haste.

“In a Lock of Hair” from Blood Snow. Copyright © 2022 by dg nanouk okpik. Used with permission of the author and Wave Books.