Backyard

The trees in the backyard looked like Eden.

The old wooden fence shone bright white-grey from harsh sunlight,
while I knelt in the cool of shade,
porch lit low, with cold pebble comfort.
I sat still, ears wide open:
chirp of a few lone birds
telegraphing secret words,
one dry brown leaf scuttling by,
a vacuum pushed by some faraway housewife.

The trees in the backyard looked like Eden,
and all is lit up crisp and clear through glasses
(now free of vanity, now I am free to wear and see)

Every smooth blade of grass
is miraculous in its place,
the coo of bird and sigh of leaves up high,
moving slight and soft–
the grey rough bark calls out to me,
“Come! Come! Come and climb, dear one, little one;
climb like you did in your youth.”

And I am overwhelmed,
intoxicated by the smell of damp earth and verdant grass and the loam of the land.

How could I ever tear myself away?
I want to run back to it all,
to my soft childhood bower:
moss where I was cradled and nurtured
and fascinated daily;
ten whole minutes staring at one
little wild ant–that changed my whole world,
it altered the course of my life.

And so He meant it to be.
Didn’t You?
Yes, I see it now. Papa, You made me this way,
and fashioned the earth with a smile on Your face,

so that as a child, when the afternoon sunlight slanted low,
before the milky moonlight rinsed the earth in pearly sweetness,
I would slide open the porch door,
heart rushing fast,
and smile at all this Glory,
because You loved me, and that is why

the trees in the backyard looked like Eden.

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