(Poem) Command, O Mistress! by Jillian Parker aka Flame in the Snow

Swift her strokes in dizzy
rumble ramble burning
scarlet gulps she glides

crimson Flicker-Tail

no net has gained a purchase
no wall could bar her from her
destination

no words have ever marred
her murmurs to the moon

like red hair that skips a generation
like a royal-blue poppy sprouting along the highway
like long-lost notes to a Requiem

she waits

flip-flopping alone in a shallow canal,
she’s spent her seed
till nothing’s left
but a throbbing center

those lazy breadcrumb-munching mallards don’t care,
they’re watching a grey gull preen himself

then,
trembling-frail,
perched on a rusting shopping cart,
Salmon Woman nods

and the spindle-legged white crane turns
step-dancing, bends and tears out her heart

and
together they ascend

a single silhouette
into
a smog-scented
sunrise.

Salmon_1
Sacramento Fall-run Chinook Salmon
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association
http://www.noaa.gov/iea/regions/california-current-region/action/sacramento-river-fall-run-chinook-salmon.html