The Interface

Fish thoughts,
shivers of electrons,
finger slivers of starlight,
silver fingers of moonlight.

Old friend, I can almost hear
your voice again tonight.

And no cove in Nova Scotia is ever complete
without its own blue heron. This one fishes the same way
spiders pose on ghostly webs of light. Or wades
deliberately, stepping on starfish dreams.

The kind of night that laps up everything
that’s ever been left unsaid.

Finger-picking billions of saline impulses
quietly undulating into disremembered melody.
Waiting for the starfish to hypnotize the fingerlings,
until he nails one.

Just to say, the song lives on
in all that’s left behind.

Meanwhile, starfish continue to fall all the way
from the Milky Way as the tide starts to turn itself
inside out on its own again, here before
dawn or dusk when no one else is listening.

Bill Howell

Bill Howell, one of the original Storm Warning poets, has had a literary career spanning five decades. His work appears regularly in journals and anthologies across Canada, in the UK, Australia, Sweden, Japan, and the US. Born in Liverpool, England, he grew up in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and has lived in Toronto for more than half his life. Bill was a network producer-director at CBC Radio Drama for three decades. Ranging from the lyrical to the ironic, his poetry deploys colloquial language, deliberate narrative, and a sharp sense of the focused moment. Recent work: Canadian Literature, Dalhousie Review, Great Lakes Review, Literary Review of Canada, The Orchards Poetry Journal, Queen’s Quarterly, Stand, Tokyo Poetry Journal, Two Thirds North, and White Wall Review. His latest collection, The Way Things Are at the Moment, will be released later this year by the American publisher, Kelsay Books.