Migration

As They Fell

He hunched over a guitar. She hunched over a notebook. He pounded drums. She pounded verbs. He poured it into a song. She ladled stew into bowls, sometimes salmon, sometimes halibut or char. They put together puzzles on the living room floor. They put together their bodies on the living room floor, candles piled on the window sills. She made quilts. He made strides. He made mistakes. She made excuses. They watched the snow fall. He made cookies. She chiseled a poem. They had dinner guests, who lined up their boots in the hall. There were many conversations. You should have seen the pile of tea bags in the sink. You should have seen the mess.  You should have seen the drifts of snow that built up on their windows before he’d head out with a broom. You should have seen the kids from the school, standing on drifts to peer into their windows. You should have seen them, jumping off the roof  into the drifts. You should have heard their screams as they fell.

Kelsea Habecker is a poet and writer. Her book of poetry, Hollow Out, was selected by US Poet Laureate Charles Simic for publication by New Rivers Press. She earned her MFA in Writing and Literature from Bennington College, and spent five years teaching in an Inupiaq Eskimo village in northern Alaska. When she’s not living or teaching elsewhere, her home base is Anchorage, Alaska.