God as the mother fox and her three kits, Apostle Islands, Wisconsin

September 10, 2019

Time for them is only light through their eyelids.
Before they fully awake
they are chasing across the lawn of the inn.
It’s 5:30 a.m.
We hear their fur
against our grass-level window glass.
They brush against our lives.

The mother has placed dead moles like Easter eggs
around the grass, and they practice hunting,
flinging gray bodies like toys, nosing
them into the air. Death is play.
Extravagant, the mother’s tail is like the collars of coats
she has no knowledge of.

They are burnished in the burnishing sunrise,
faces sharp and keen. The water beyond
we name, Superior, as we name everything.
They don’t know end or beginning.
They have invented romp and joy.
They believe
they are one being,
these four, and when one disappears,
the others search for wholeness.

We press our faces against the windows
as they rush past, cresting with their
exhilaration. We bark with excitement
so wildness might find us.
The foxes stop to look toward our noise, quizzical,
but behind their reflection, we’re invisible.