Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2012 v11n1
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Once, I found myself lost in a wood—
not an allegorical wood, but real
forest, oak and loblolly pine,

probably owned by a lumber company
biding its time. I wandered down the paths
worn by whitetails. The sun fell behind

a stand of poplars. I had no bars, and soon,
no battery. The ardent peepers sang
all night; the moon and I hummed along.

It was rather nice to be alone, and so
I did not rush or panic. I licked the dew
from magnolia leaves. I ate seven toadstools

the color of napalm, and did not die. My hair
grew long as Spanish moss, and I brushed it smooth
with a comb of bones. Why cry out, or try

to find a way to leave, when everything
I needed was there? No one missed me, or sent
a search party. Perhaps I was not lost

at all, but came by choice. I slept on a bed
of ferns. Oh, the smell of the cooling earth!
Oh, the softness pushing through my back,

curling intimately through my jaw,
enfeathering the bird bones of my ear!
A red fox made off with my tibia,

but I did not begrudge it. He was a fox.
I like to tell this story on summer nights,
when owls cruise above on soundless wings.

Remember, every word of this is true.    

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