I know the sound that ravens make as they play,
the song of sandhill cranes migrating south;
I’ve heard the fawn when the lion claims its prey,
the scream as the neck breaks in the powerful mouth.
I’ve seen clouds of snow geese lifting as one
from prairies of rice and grain; morning sun
has bathed me, naked, on top of snow-cold mountains,
water has poured on me, naked, from thermal fountains.
I know the names of grasses and when they seed,
can smell true spring in the tang of wild mustards.
Others have won Emmys, benefits, degrees –
my success is measured by passing vultures.
Where finches, grosbeaks, redwings warble and talk,
there daily, slowly, I have been learning to walk.