IV. The Navigator

Merciless
by Sarah Henstra | October 31, 2020

We decided the dog would travel back and forth
With the kids.
Shark-toothed weeds edged the moon pool.
Your brow was creased as maybe in a dream.
There’s no point talking, you said,
If we’re going to get emotional.
Last night she lay, panting, across my
Threshold as loneliness struck, shed
Its merciless light.
My plan now is stick to routines:
A wagging tail for my journey between towers,
A lolling tongue.


Sarah Henstra (she/her)’s novel The Red Word won the 2018 Governor General’s Literary Award. Sarah is a professor in the Department of English at Ryerson University in Toronto.