I Run to Trosper Pond
Fallen yellow leaves damp and fragrant
make their way by scented droplets
to my inhale.
Down, down, then up the hill on Oak Tree road,
where patches of woods hold space
for squirrels and a canopy
for warblers, hawks and owls.
A blue ream of after the rain sky opens
as I turn the corner,
cumulus and stratus stretch out
in a diagonal, north and
I run to Trosper Pond and there is
Grass tall around a painted mailbox
with a black and white hunting hound,
bounding for the pheasant.
I stretch my stride and seek the grass
as a silver compact car
accelerates without concern
that I’m inches from his door.
But why be angry; there is joy
in the near miss…
I live and run on to Trosper Pond,
where a gaggle of new white geese are raising a ruckus
on the gravel path
that leads to the weeping willow
and the rippling surface of the water
so gentle it will embrace the cloud
that has somehow found a way to float there
while also hanging in the sky.
A little A-frame boathouse sits by the empty dock,
inviting me back to those years I wore two braids, and
dad called me injun.
He a descendant of the Cree Nation, a fact hidden
from school and workplace,
passing for white because being a native
in the time of his parent’s short life
was as degrading as being black or worse,
you were dirt–
a drunken vulgar savage
with no rights to live free,
being so poor his mother hid her children
in pickle barrels
from social service tyrants,
who believed poverty was a reason to separate
I run to Trosper Pond
700 miles and six years after his death
to find him here enjoying this late afternoon light
and these obnoxious geese,
and the dogs who bark at us
all the way home.