By Richard LaClair
There was a day when my feet knew
the knobs of roots, points of stones,
webs of tripping brush.
And I could run, buck-like, prancing.
Barefoot, flexed easily away
from sharp shafts, pointed sticks.
I loved grey clay oozing between toes
when I splashed across a stream.
Nothing within my eyes’ reach
was foreign, fearful, other.
The song of the wood thrush melted,
quivered in the still evening.
Bird Songs turned baritone
in the thickening night-phone.
Evening tossed pick-up-stick
shadows beyond trees.
The gentle strobe of fireflies
presented a new forest at each step.
All I have ever wanted
is to be steward of this place and time.
RICHARD LACLAIR will join poets Perry Nicholas and Lisa Wiley in a reading at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Impact Artists Gallery, Suite 545, Trimain Building, 2495 Main St., as a part of the gallery’s members art show and reception. An Evans native, he is a professor emeritus of the English Department at Erie Community College. This poem is from his recently published first collection of poems titled “Grand View.”