* * *
* * *
I’m an old turtle, and I know where
the water is. Wherever I am,
I am always here, and the water
is always with me—a weight,
a fragrance—even when it is over there.
I’m an old turtle, and I know how
to stand with the night swirling
out from under me—black water
around the trunks of trees.
My shell is lined with stars,
And that is how I go.
I am always going that way
even when pond lilies rise
and rose mallow burns along the shore.
When you see me in the summer field
or high on autumn’s hill, you always ask,
“Where are you going, Turtle?”
I cannot tell if you have heard me.
My answer never changes.
Some day, you will know.