Dan Chiasson

Spring 2019

 The mountains around him opened in great flashing crevasses and
out poured men and women by the hundreds, smiling and laughing;
he was a monitoring eagle seeing life from all angles
Then he was the one seen, like a monitoring eagle glimpsed in the
trees, a rare and beautiful symbol.
Then again he was the eagle's eye, hidden in the deep branches of
a pine, far above, an eye that understood everything.
 the rockface launched from its chasms
           bright orange skiers
 auroras flashed then drifted
           the skiers were crepe paper
 the mountain had a mouth
           and it ate passing airplanes
 the conscience of the Adirondacks
           is the sandwort is the tundra yew
 a volley of clouds whipped past
           the trees and over the valley
 where Mount Mansfield was ready
           with its down the line return

Dan Chiasson is the author of five books, including, most recently, the poetry collection Bicentennial. He teaches at Wellesley College and reviews poetry for the New Yorker.

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