Fields,
beaches,
ponds,
and trees
sing
as you
fall
on twigs
and bridles,
feathers,
moss,
sludge,
and sandbanks.
You hug
in groups
of seven,
thirteen,
or fifty-three.
Fragile
and immobile,
you lie
side by side,
defying
your
hungry
predators.
Brown
patches
or turquoise
patterns
become
a soft
embrace,
an act
of camouflage
that protects
your
burgeons
of life
from
our greedy
hands
and
growling
stomachs—
nothing
can stop
our appetite
for
the
vital
protein
running
inside
the elliptical
shape
of your chalky
beige
shells.
In the protected
space
of your
nesting
nature,
your viscous
substance
creates—
a
beating
heart,
followed
by
blood
vessels,
a tail bud,
wings and legs,
eyes,
brains,
beaks and claws,
feathers and scales.
After days
or weeks
or months,
you crack—
in the fields,
and in the trees,
on beaches
and in the reeds,
creatures
crawl,
squawk
and walk
tasting
the air
and the
nourishing
juice
of
food.
Now
rack
and ruin
you stay
behind
as little
dirty
white dots,
composing
compost,
sand
and soil.
Carried
along by
flowing
water,
you become
fertile
ground,
sediments,
and the source
of a new
cycle
of
life.

Inpired by Pablo Neruda’s Ode to the Tomato and Ode to a Large Tuna in the Market.

As I share this poem written over the past weeks, I realize that the themes of the approaching Autumn season include Fields and Ecology, and that this Ode sings towards it, perhaps shaping a bridge from Spring to Autumn.

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