Book of Joys: Poetry

There is a poet,
Amanda Lamarche,
who writes convincingly
about trees;
I picture her planted
somewhere – no, not
planted, that isn’t right –
rooted, that’s
the word – I picture her
rooted somewhere,
creeping ever
closer to the stake.

I read her poems over
several days, until
I had drained the book
of ideas – I felled
them one by one, how
clever – the
poetic equivalent, I
think, of eating a hearty
meal rather too

But the strange thing
isn’t so much
her words or forests or
trope (what’s a trope, again?)
but that when I
turned to the last page
I thought it was you
in the photograph.

What a trick! I said to
myself, you publishing a book
behind my back and
waiting for me to say
pretentious and entirely
wrong things
like Charles Bukowski
as a nice young lady

Of course, you haven’t
attended the University of Victoria –
yet – nor would you
thank your fiercely supportive parents.
But if you do publish
someday, don’t tell me about it.
Let me open it to the last
page and say (because I talk
too much),
is that Amanda Lamarche?