If we must speak of each other, let it be
in the forms that monarchs and generals use
to refer to their rivals; as if each were known
to the other only through field reports
and classified intelligences. Let it be
in tones of wariness, grudging respect, and,
where permitted, mutual admiration.
Let our campaign be conducted on these terms.
And if people speak of the “break-up”,
let us hear in that the cold overtones
of the word as applied to a glacier: how,
when the ice began to shudder and crack,
new light found an entry, and the gleaming designs,
evolving each moment, each moment formed
a kaleidoscope view – a les through which
an eerie and unforeseen world finally offered
itself to be seen – as the fragments, mindless
and pure, frigid yet free, plunged
to the sea, that vast, that resolute,
that insensate, that insatiable sea.
Troy Jollimore, After from Tom Thomson in Purgatory, 2006