fireflies summon

this is darkness
          the river swollen with doubt
          its sullen mutter
the sky is a haul of dead fish
spilt from a sprung trap
          pewter underbellies mirror
          moonless glints of chop
the river surface teems
with eviscerated roots
          broken leaf and shoot
          drowned logs – crocodile echoes
death shushes past
i shrink
from the river’s wet fingering
          my dry-leaf canoe a fragile
          tipping husk
balance is a febrile dream
          on the agitation of the motor
          the small propeller’s churn
          the shifting point
          between certain and uncertain
between solid ground
and sucking abyss
          the interface a muddy bank
          of unassailable silt
there is no anchor point
          the night wind frays belief
          a heron flaps a black rag
but chance is a dance
of pinpoint light –
          fireflies summon certainty
          and weave a safety net
of wonder