It is my morning routine
to stroll by the wood shed
and make a deliberate pass or two
around the perimeter of the chicken coop
lined with entanglements of wood and wire
a poor excuse for a fence
that waits patiently for a stiff wind
to put it out of its misery.

Then on to the large Birch
to inspect for any signs of passersby
that may have mistakenly laid claim
to my pissing post while I had been off duty
misdirected by the comfort of a wood fire
but quickly correcting the issue
with a relief of my own.

With morning chores behind me,
I find a quiet spot just over the knoll
by path worn and free of prickers
from previous morning commutes.
There, I will sit in stillness
for no particular amount of time
For as long as I can bear to
Until I am content or until I have realized
that I have been away for longer than I should.

In stillness I am
both here and nowhere.
I am barely more noticeable
than the knurled Birch fome.
I am privy to the Sapsucker
cautiously inspecting my presence
from his hollow in the old Poplar.
I am disoriented by a thickening curtain of fog
the forest keeping just enough hidden for herself.
I am guided by a convincing breath of wind
that quivers the Aspen leaf
and whispers to the rhododendrons.
I am absorbed by a perpetual conversation
between the gurgling creek and a thicket of Alder.
I am tempted by the rustling of newly fallen leaves
under the toes of a curious Camp Robber.

In stillness the forests sings
with all the life it has tucked away
into knotholes, pulpits, and burrows
Asking me to stay a while longer
so it may share a secret or two more.
In stillness I have forgotten why
I came here in the first place.

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