Muted, Mutate

Leah Poole Osowski

Boarding the rowboat in shadow bodies,
the light, everywhere in tongues, except
on them, and ears positively ringing
in insects, muted pastels, pasted shore.

Steady, ineffectual as a goal, ghosted by
the lake and her mood swings, the water
snake’s tendency of effortless division.
One of them weighed the day, bagful
of nectarines, the other measured monthly
progress of the sun yolking the horizon.
Their sluice-blue hearts irradiating their
chests, they speak heron in undertones,
oar-lock in the pauses, until a thunder
overhead, an all-consuming decibel
escalating atmosphere and the hearts
climbed their jet-fuel-coated throats,
slipped out their mouths, tranced
as bucket carp, drifted straight down
to mud-depth and detritus, a split-decision
to estivate for a spell, burrow torpor and set.