My parents were married for sixty years
and many circumnavigations of the globe.

If my widowed mother dreamed of my father,
they were always on an airplane heading out.

Next week my husband and I will take off
for Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, that farthest

southern city of the world, and when we sail
the Beagle Channel, our strange marriage

will have come with us. I will have brought
too many books, and he, the wrong shoes,

and we’ll court like the owl and the pussy cat
in our beautiful pea green boat. Or quibble.

But I have come to believe that all marriages
are strange and that the linking of one body

to another, even in sex, is just a brief attempt
to overcome some blue isolation of the mind,

the mind that floats like ice in its own channels
and only in melting becomes the sea. Waves

keep on foaming into separate crests. I know
my mother never dreamed them flying home.