Sonnet (Deer)

Sarah Helms


when i’ve explained again that a quiet
day is not sad and i’ve no other word for this than, quiet.

maybe better to open my hands, have you trace some lines.
for i’ve written of the lady of the woods, the lady rivers, many times.

and today she came, rising slickly from night river.
she wears birch and bears’ eyes, looses my vein-trapped magic silky silver.

i see her at water’s edge, where she bends, puts on her redsoaked deer hide.
in warm furred flat spine, she melts up grey mountain rise. right

after, i know better than to follow.

but in the smells of broken grass, of morning, damp light,
i read her word, her body: saying listen, and in my own dark nights,
be kind. nose and feel the hollows.


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