The Glacier Attends its Own Funeral

Suzannah Evans

Ki [from the Potowatomi word Aakibmaadiziiwin] to signify a being of the living earth. Not he or she, but ki. So that when the robin warbles on a summer morning, we can say, “Ki is singing up the sun.”
Robin Wall Kimmerer, ‘Speaking of Nature’.

Ki surges around the ankles
of the mourners cannot unpeel Ki-self
so easily from the land

from the air
it would look like dry ice curdling
on a nightclub floor

Ki like we all might
sometimes regrets its slowness

would say as much to the beanie hats
that brush their hiking boots in its bed
read the plaque stuck to the stone

wish for something
as they look back the way they’ve come


Ki has joined a Valhalla of sorts
pale bristlecone trunks that stand
lightningstruck and falling open in canyons

ancient sharks pulled like breezeblocks
before their time from the concrete sea

Ki’s brother mountain Ök the cold
shoulder of rock where Ki leaned
persists craggily they shared
many mornings
of mint-streaked dawn aurora

seven hundred years of one surface
pressured by another

Suzannah Evans lives in Sheffield. Her pamphlet Confusion Species was a winner in the 2012 Poetry Business Book and Pamphlet Competition and her debut collection Near Future was published by Nine Arches Press in 2018. She was the winner of a Gladstone’s Library residency in October 2019 for Near Future, and her poem ‘Helpline’ was Poem of the Week in The Guardian.