Alpine Wilderness – Joy Reid

Within your icy boundaries
tiny seedlings flourish.
Frozen water forms
walrus tusk and narwhal horn,
the unicorn is no stranger here.
Silvered boles endorse
pewter pleating, bronzed folds,
their long, olive limbs both
sinuous and oiled,
snow-wet stoas passing lore.

All is peace, all lies waiting, wrapped in ermine robe.
The hush betokens worshipful repose.

Too soon
will they come
in lurid space suit clothes,
assert an unwelcome
assault on the snow.
Crash through foliage,
slash at trees,
snap off stalactites,
despoil sublimity.

And as they leave –
having heaped a drift of snow on the hood –

they comment with unfelt irony
on their
communion
with the bush.