today I began packing the evidence of our life
into neat piles and organized boxes
the last time I did this it was to come here
to travel upon this road that is our love
which is the same as saying our life

as it happens when one sorts the symbols
of past and the pieces of it we take forward
I found what is I think
the most accurate photograph of me that exists

there is no quick smile
no glint of my love for life
shining in my eyes
that is not what was captured

instead, I am paddle-poised
one arm up and the other
about to delve into the water
my back to the camera
solitary kayak on a long lake
the dog of my childhood
quiet and in profile
together the two of us
crossing the water

this one memory caught
speaks more to me
than any other pose
tells me more about myself
than any mirror

looking at it
I smile with the side of my mouth
the one that never shows right
in any picture
blink
and return to my packing