Distinctly Montana Magazine

Summer 2012

Distinctly Montana Magazine

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Literary Lode DEPARTMENT Summer Poems BY B.J. BUCKLEY THE MISSOURI AND MATISSE NIGHT FISHING There's a floating borderland between light going down to darkness and the humming rise of insects into the drift currents of cool wind over water, over this lake which holds the world mirrored perfectly: dry hills, sage, drowned cottonwoods, the buoyant angler whipping the wild horses of the air with a supple rod – with the merest flick of the wrist fly poised on the surface before sinking in a soft spiral bottomward, where hunger follows, where the eye cannot. The strike, when it comes, is quick hard down, an elephantine pull, an ache – a sudden nothing. Whatever it was that leapt out of the dark water wearing fish flesh and haloed in the moon, that swallowed the mayfly's dance then hung by threads of starlight weightless in the still air, and fell, a streak of silver comet-sure back into rippling heaven, cannot be betrayed by naming, though it named me: Cast-Away, Night-Fisher, Ghost-in-the-Shallows – I am trying to learn to walk like water. 26 Cut-out clouds a stripe of blue the scissors of vision precise: Missouri Breaks like the pale cliffs of Dover in a circus of beautiful light – snip out a bird purple bird thousand swallows nesting in soft escarpments all the curves curls currents arranged off kilter yellow rubber (the rapids) raft and some fish finny fellows in fine quick fettle one here silver there one arcing an orange Moon. DISTINCTLY MONTANA • SUMMER 2012

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