Let me belong

In 1983 I prayed to ducks
a few geese, sometimes a seagull

I went out to them, dressed, with my toes covered
Driven by coach to the edge of their water hostel

Or, if I had the choice, in my nightgown
Bare feet on dew spiked suburban lawn

Disordered places
Web of relations hidden, gone

Ceremonial scent of Juniper
Offering bag in my pink paw

Always together, tied by love
Powerful smack of wings above

Floating, iridescent grace
Cupped in a palm of reflected space

Peers on the ground, familar toddlers:
side to side, shoulder sway strut

Yet – they could leave at any time
Shake their tails – fast – down the wide asphalt

Delicately, then, show what you’ve brought
Adults away – you’ll scare them off!

The bag often deeper than my arm was long

The holy task of crumbling, giving to ground

The song

Of desert morning light
sparkle of the night’s wetness

ascending to sky

Ring chain of calls
Here are my gifts

Let me belong

Published by Devon Riley

lately: youth work, parenting, sorcery, books, walks in the woods

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