Chukchi Woman

Chukchi Woman


Lost in drifts of dawn

you walk and walk

With eyes of raven

and slits of obsidian

Don’t slip or blink

You’ll fall into the

mouth of the man-eater

Don’t sleep or awaken

inside the skin of a seal

or mouth of a tiger

Let your soul slip into

migrating geese and

see with ten thousand eyes

the past and future

Let your voice echo whales

calling their ancestors

across screech owls

Scoop darkness up with

both hands

Tie your soul

to antlers of reindeer

Watch thunder roll

Shake the forest leaves with your rattle

Elude darkness and

men with sunken eyes

who trap souls in nets and

steal your dreams as you

drift through fire and water

mix cloud, water and placenta

with earth to coax the first breath

of a child without memories

to shed your skin

on raven’s wings

© 2023 Genny Lim

Listen to Genny Lim read Chukchi Woman

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