You can’t plan in the Antarctic. You can’t buckle straps
to your hips like a mountaineer and trek across the glass river
knowing for sure that the reflections of your feet are following.
The rain opens and closes as quickly as a showerhead.
Thick snow might touch your tongue before it cam tap out
the words you’ve decided on. The clothes you put on
are ludicrous in an hour: the Shetland jumper, wetsuit, khakis,
whatever people wear. You can’t even bang the door of the igloo
and run outside because you’re tired of your love,
and expect the same door to be there when you get back.
No picnics are ever held in the Antarctic,
even on the days that look sunny from the inside,
even on days when the foxes and the seals are dancing in the light,
even when you believe with all your heart that the sun will last.