Who’s to say when spring arrives? The crowns
of jays on the deck, a downy woodpecker who mistakes
man-made for natural habitat.
The surprise—a great heron’s flat yellow eye,
sharpened through the lens of your father’s
binoculars (hauled in a black carry-on
across provinces), its feathers navy and slate, jean-
coloured, startling against the river,
the anemic grasses—a pop quiz on
after months of white on white, the clouded absence
Annick MacAskill is the author of No Meeting Without Body (Gaspereau Press, 2018), and a chapbook, Brotherly Love: Poems of Sappho and Charaxos (Frog Hollow Press, 2016). She has new poems forthcoming in Canadian Notes & Queries, Event, The Antigonish Review, Room Magazine, and The Nova Scotia Advocate. Originally from Ontario, she currently lives and writes in Halifax.