The Maynard
Spring 2016

Ashley-Elizabeth Best


We lost our step west of the Petawawa River.
Drawn in at the sight of kissable wood and the
breeze threading through the treeline, a voice like
reeds rubbing in the wind.

Through the tops of scabbed trees, the May
sun wavers, leans into the nearest clouds.
Alert with nettles savaging our ankles,
fearful of a confrontation that could draw
rivulets of blood.

We fell into a bed of ostrich ferns and
shared the crippled joint, distracted by
the bucking moth-like flight of chickadees,
streaking in and out of a tamarack.

I’d read somewhere chickadees grow new
brain cells, one cell to remember where
it hides each seed; map-makers, able to etch
their routes on the brain.

Soon we could see nothing but the
tree in front of us. We stepped into
the treeline, finding our way back
tonight, like trying to net the rain.