If you ever lose heart and the earth seems as distant as stars fading into the noise of your busy mind, know this. That a tiny island exists in the blue hands of the ocean. That a tree grows upright into the salted clouds. That two eagles love each other enough to spend their lives greeting the morning sun together. That two eaglets stand in their nest, gazing at the heavens. Looking down to the forever ground. They eat and sleep and flap their wings. And one day in July, one by one, they will jump into the air. They will know the difference between existing and what is beyond. They will hold onto nothing. The hurricane will come, courage catching their pinions on fire, as they mount the wind, climbing ladders into realms of the invisible.

--T.L. Stokes

Monday, April 12, 2010

Nanny and the Mouse

There's a mouse in the car she said,
gasping, giggling and beginning to cry.
I listened to the phone message smiling.
Under the tire in the trunk a mouse
put together a cozy arrangement
of fuzz, thread, hay and other
fine collectibles. Mice droppings
were left like tiny footprints
across the rear seat. Now when
Louise is driving to the big house
where she looks after the twins
and runs the household, she
thinks she feels the mouse
run over her leg. She wiggles
in alarm trying to keep her
hands on the wheel.

Today she came back to the farm
to check the dogs. Guess what?
she asks, her voice rising like
bells and wind. I found a mouse!
Dead! In the driveway at the house,
dead and flat. What does this mean?

We talk about what it could mean
and nothing means anything. It could
be her mouse but she never parks
in the driveway at work. I hid it
from the girls, she says. I wonder
how she picked it up, where she
thought to place it. What its
tiny flat body looked like dangling
from her fingers.

I wonder what the omen means. And wait,
to see what happens next.

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