Where the creek stops in moss-laden pools
miles above the Kaweah in August, wild hens
collect with half-grown poults scratching for seeds
and bugs—aware, but not caring. I whistle
for a gobble as they drift off into the brush
as I have, into the canyons of lichened rock,
the Live Oak and Chamise. I am native
here, apart from where I came to forget
the blunderbuss of duplicity.
I came to be refreshed by the unafraid,
by the innocent and self-reliant—
I came to bring some home with me.