publishing poetry only

Monday's Poem

Sean Arthur Joyce is well known in the Kootenays for his journalism and two books of regional history, A Perfect Childhood: 100 Years of Heritage Homes in Nelson (quoted on Knowledge Network's BC Moments segment on Nelson's heritage homes); and Hanging Fire & Heavy Horses: A Century of Public Transit in Nelson, on the City's historic streetcars and buses.

He is the author of two collections of poetry from New Orphic Publishers, Nelson, B.C.: The Charlatans of Paradise (2005) and Star Seeds (2009), as well as numerous chapbooks and limited editions. He has published other poets' work under his limited editions imprint Chameleon Fire Editions (


© 2012 Sean Arthur Joyce

Separate Worlds

Galena Bay, Arrow Lake, April, 2012

Otter unzips the lake's
pristine stillness—
her wake dissolving
a spring sky stacked
with steely clouds
still brooding winter.
She reaches shoreline's
sculpted granite,
scampers onto sun-palmed
stone to be with her mate.
They nuzzle, chase,
dive and climb out again,
vanish into a cleft.

We stand watching
with binoculars—mortals
seeking a god's-eye view.
Suddenly aware of us,
she raises a whiskery face
to peer back at us—
dark eyes wet and full,
wondering what creatures
creep into her realm
from such a distance.

But something soon
pulls her away,
and the curtain closes,
its brief shard of light
extinguished. She cleaves
water swiftly, bound
for favourite fishing grounds.
We follow the elegant
heads of mergansers—
certain of their direction,
dowsing for sustenance—
and return to the car
as the ferry approaches.

A crack in the veil has opened
and we carry its sliver of light
into our separate worlds.