M Ross Henry
BY EACH AN ELSE ENTIRELY
—For/after Jeffrey Schwaner
Together we are incremental, some shape
that rises to circumstances,
some cloud that slides across a moment.
Annihilation as beach, the dream
of sun-watching. We act the same sometimes,
tectonic and grand.
Jetties gather what is final. (They have to.)
Once, you lowered yourself beneath them,
subsumed by place and loss—
a calling, a surge brought to riot.
We've never been well-read in the waves.
Though we stood here, level. We have gained gains.
And in the gaining, we go on.
"By Each an Else Entirely" was written using only the words that appear in an
excerpt of Jeffrey Schwaner's poem "The Drift."
M Ross Henry lives and writes in the lower Missouri River Basin. The motto of the state where M lives is ad astra per aspera, meaning "to the stars through difficulties," which captures not only the essence of the human condition but also the attempt to capture that condition in and through poetry.