Disguised as a Child (for Deborah)
down slippery banks to catch the minnows
unaware, ignoring stones I splash through shallows.
Mud coats my sneakers, climbs
my pants legs to the knees. I'm
not afraid to crawl.
the wild raspberry thickets
discover 19 different kinds of moss,
examine each one carefully before I place
it back in someone else's space.
Next time I might
come back, see how they like
their brand new neighborhoods. I might not,
a locust tree wants climbing, here's a big rock
I'll turn over, see what's underneath,
3 chunks of sandstone have sharp edges that need
carving 'cause I have a penknife
IF I'M VERY QUIET
lilies of the valley slide out from their leafy
hiding places, show themselves to me,
and when I'm crawling low I see
the way trees do. The truth of trees
is that their heads aren't in the sky.
Their leaves are on their feet, eyes
down close to the ground where
everything is happening. Their
roots have tongues and I hear maples
laughing from the squirrels
playing tag around their toes.