In the twelfth mile,
well after we were lost and found ourselves again,
we sit on a fallen log to think
about what it meant to get so seriously lost.
The scent of damp sweet grass hangs,
the heavy heads of wild iris nod in the limp breeze.
It’s important to know your limits, I say,
Some people never learn them, you say.
the leaves sing like water
the birds rush in the trees.
Sometimes, I say, embarrassed, I wake up and watch the tendons in the back of my hands as I move my fingers and I say to myself I am a delicate machine.
You practice the motion and smile.
The knowing and sharing of a too honest secret is a miracle.
My good legs that carried me well past the long hike I’d intended-
a miracle to tie the body to the soul.
“I would like to be a bridge”
I announce to my students.
They know me and understand.
Our delicate minds clasped, spanning the divide
a miracle of growth and recognition.
I tell you that God has spoken to me
through the new leaves of a once dead houseplant-
I have been reminded that not all growth happens on the surface,
my love and tender care has not been wasted.
God has asked me for my patience, I say.
You don’t laugh, as you might,
but tell me God speaks
when we need to hear Him.