losing Banff

mountain markers abound, at least we’re in the vicinity,
so near and yet so far is the song we’re not singing,
on this second wrong turnoff of a shortening afternoon

despite the map’s precision, despite having been before,
we cannot correct our course
‘no U-turn’ one sign declares, too late,
we’ve overshot a major mountain town,
trip after trip, same promise to keep, a sharper eye,
not for bear who sometimes stumble out
of hibernation, mistaken in the date; nor for elk,
we have plenty of postcards

in the crosswind, two ravens pedal backwards,
they should have tipped us off that roads
can be deceitful, mountain roads most of all,
built to bypass normal melt routes, built to skirt,
to cheat, to cut off miles, mere travelers are bound
to lose their way, fated to repeat the mistake

~ Myrna Garanis

Myrna Garanis’s Edmonton front window looks out on lawns and magpies, not mountains; still, the Rockies tempt and torment. Myrna’s poems appear in recent issues of CV2 and Room of One’s Own. She is currently involved in Eyeing the Magpie, a performance/writing project in collaboration with four other poets.

One Response to “losing Banff”

  1. There’s always Canmore. I loved the tongue-in-cheek of this piece, but more, beneath it all is a clever tale of modern society missing it all. Nice.

Leave a Reply