The Geese

As soon as they come over the mountain
into the Connecticut valley and see the river
they will follow until nightfall,
bodies, or cells, begin to tumble
between the streamers of their flight,
thinning the left, thickening the right;
and shaking with its inner noises
the flock shifts weight like a snowplowing skier
and turns, and yahonks and spirit-cries
toward that flow of light spelled into its windings
endlessly ago—each body flashing white
against the white sky when the wings lift,
and black when they fall, the invisible
continuously perforating the visible—
and trembles away, to vanish, but before that
to semi-vanish, as a mirage
or deepest desire does when it gets
the right distance from us and becomes rhythmic.