Dear ones,

what is it we are after

on this bridge, in the frozen

solitudes? What simple

act of kindness will bind us

forever? What is it

that might solve us, absolve

us? What radiant

glimmering now gone?


How shall we survive

the tempest that swirls

around our thin boat?

How are we to live

in such a gale

of grief and becoming,

bewildering lostness?


Where is the rock, that stalwart

homecoming we could

cling to? Where

is the break

between the clouds?

Where is anything

constant, wholly

good that doesn’t evaporate

or wind up

forgotten among a pile

of weeds and bills?


We ache with the same ache.

We burn, dimly, with the same

knowing. We are alive

with the same turbulent

blood. Dreams

swim in our eyes. Our hands

reach for the same touch.


by Maxima Kahn, first published in San Diego Poetry Annual