Monday, August 13, 2018

a mother bear and three cubs

over the edge

our cabin is comfortably walled
and creature comforts surround us within it,
it could be anywhere
that has umbilicals for electricity, water, waste,

yet where it is here, the wild is just outside:
a national park, a creek, the woods,
unfenced nature we can enjoy
just over our own fence of screen wire,

usually the world outside is of Eden,
with only insects to be annoying,

this summer, though, bears have come over the fence,
the one native animal still around 
whose strength and attitude can challenge us,
the edge a perch for us,
but also an opening for the bear
to hope to come into our world
for the food we have in abundance,
leaf and seed and bug not enough 
to fill the holes of their hunger,

last evening, a mother bear and three cubs 
wanted to come into the Cabin
where they could smell food,
the apple so tempting,
her impetuous nose in the lead,

her claws snd muscles scratched to find a way
to the food she knew to be just inside,,
her sense of smell so acute that one M&M can entice her,
this night bananas, candy, a chicken stir-fry,
all the food inside, drew her 
for she and her cubs need to eat,
Winter is coming,
and they need to be fat,
the storm door in the way 
of the imperative of the mother  she is,

our anxieties are often abstract, at a remove,
the bear reminds us that we are only sort of in control,
that concrete reality can come over the edge,
and we can be expelled from Eden.

by Henry H. Walker
August 8, ‘18

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