Inside Passage

By RACHEL MORGENSTERN-CLARREN

 

Like the forearms
of the fishermen,

Each docked boat
is tattooed across its bow:

Cinnamon GirlHazel B,
Lady Lou, Miner’s Debt.

Low mountains
encircle the marina, the rock

And snow of each peak
patched like molting caribou.

The sky dark
and still, clouds hitched

To the waning moon.
A net and diesel canister

Tangle in the surf,
rosemaled waves

Slapping the hull. Only
cannery lights at this hour—

Gilding barnacles,
mussels, your profile

As you turn
slowly in from the wind.

 

Rachel Morgenstern-Clarren is an MFA candidate in poetry and literary translation at Columbia University. The recipient of an Academy of American Poets Prize and a Hopwood Award, her work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in Two Lines and Asymptote.

Inside Passage

Related Posts

Shenyang: In Search of Reverse Donkeys

TONY HAO
They erased the city’s impoverished past but in no way offered an extravagant present available to everyone. I decided that even if I couldn’t find Shenyang’s past, at least I’d like to see a reverse donkey.

Filipino immigrants at a farm labor camp

The Ghost of Jack Radovich 

TERESA B. WILSON-GUNN
Mama saw her boss, Jack Radovich, standing in her row during a sweltering San Joaquin afternoon. She was picking table grapes alone when he suddenly appeared, several yards away, gazing off in the direction of the blue-gray Sierra mountains.

Jim Guy as a child with his family of adults and children

Fruit Tramps, Moving On

JIM GUY
A fruit tramp family of the 1930s stayed in many places for short periods of time. We arrived, picked the crop, and moved on. That’s why we were called tramps, nomads, and many other things not nearly as complimentary.