Me, You, Pika

–by Cameron Scott

In the rosehips, in the scree.
Great big ears, small furry body.

I could fit this endangered thing in my hands
and it would struggle.

I could fit this wild thing in my hands,
heart beating too fast.

Still, I’m ready with steel leg bands and plastic ear tags.
I’m ready to stuff it in my jacket pocket,
lined with loam and grass.

Hunting with my hands I’ve forgotten about the big looming shape
of my body. I’ve forgotten about the creek

which tumbles over the moraine’s lip
and disappears beneath boulders.

I search the fading light in the direction of the pika’s shrill whistle.

This is what I dream about, in my dream,
late at night in the high alpine cirque.

The whole world encroaches on me, you, and the pika. There is only one
of each of us. Just one of each of us left,
and I’m out of my mind to hold it
in my hands.

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