White Violets

— Deborah Kennedy

Still woodland, jade in early light
all young trees grown from a fallen forest.
Dirt road rakes up the valley
mercifully graded
not for my bike
but for rumbling logging trucks
long gone.

Handlebars jerk left and right
pumping up the slow hill
pushing in low gear
blowing like a horse on a first spring ride.
First sounds stream skyward

wood thrush call swells up
wellspring rising.
Stopping, leaning into the bike
settling dust in breathless air.
Redwood, tanoak, and madrone
sun sifts through ten thousand leaves in
raucous revival
of every stained glass green.
Ice clear notes rip
through shadowed spaces.
Memory’s spur

all waits inside
like a shattered glass bowl
wet with slices of ripe plum.
Each moment lost.

Wood thrush song
twisting flutes, sliding crystal surges
like the flash of an unseen blade
cuts to the quick.
Remember that day.

In the seared grass
at my feet, tiny white violets.

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