Do not count the souls that rest
upon your attentiveness, the pump
that failed that must be fixed
to fill the only trough for miles.
Hundreds wait in shadows
while cattle graze unknowing.
A dragonfly watches from the edge
of emptiness, woodpeckers attach
themselves to nearby trees—hawks
roost and rabbits check for leaks.
Do not count the souls
you never knew before.
All you need to know
is how it works. You can
jerry-rig a poem to hold water
with few tools, or fix it right
so it will last, but don’t count souls
come just to watch the dance.