A white-bellied carp breaks the water’s
surface, crickets chirp a background chorus.
Bats fly a crazy trajectory, then
fold like origami, cling to the eaves.
A great horned owl swoops, glides
above an old man who fills mason jars
with what he calls sacred mud of the healing lake.
In the lobby of faded sun, I pass row after row
of pinned butterflies under glass.
Memento Mori of old hotel, long-gone guests;
of Anise Swallowtail
Days of green and summer’s
sulphurous heat that bursts cocoons.
Fragile speckled wings that someone felt
the need to pin down.
You’re awake as a child until they teach you
the names of things.