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

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Songs of the Puget Sound


hens carried their round flouncy bodies
up into the coup,
chittering and cooing their sunshine happiness.

Something then moved out of the blackberries.
Little gift of wildness,
a cup of warmth
in a baby's coat

and hardly afraid.

The hens in bed told stories
soft so soft
to each other and the hidden moon.

So I sat on the porch of the hen house
glad songs welcoming ears,
and the rabbit,
no more than a few weeks old,
nibbled the tender grass.

There is a time at the end of the most perfect day,
when the sun has been your companion,
when the air lingers full of the first few days of summer,

when there could be no more perfection
and then comes a movement,
the brown innocence,
quicker beat of heart
so far from your own.

To rise up on tiny bones and wonder,
to grasp a green stalk
taller than your head,

with no hands. Yes, no hands.
And I imagine how small its ivory
grinding as the grass and seeds slip
down into that bit of darkness.

Imagine what may come later in the long night
of larger hungers. And I wonder if it lives in fear.
And if not is this called innocence.

The ears turn to gather from this way and that
a warning, yet the air is warm and heavy. Old moon
hasn't yet climbed into its fields of stars.

And the hens, fall silent.
I leave the seed eater as we have
both reached our satisfaction.

A day like that
one hardly knows
how to write about.


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