A Rabbit in the Porchlight | A Preview of Wild Life by Jamie K. Reaser
A new preview of Wild Life: New and Selected Poems by Jamie K. Reaser. Featuring a foreword by Edward E. Clark Jr., President of the Wildlife Center of Virginia. Hiraeth Press will be donating $2.00/book to support theWCV’s environmental education and wildlife medicine programs! The release date will be June 28, 2013. Pre-order this book now exclusively in our bookstore. Jamie is author of such books as Note to Self: Poetry for Changing the World from the Inside Out and Sacred Reciprocity.
A RABBIT IN THE PORCHLIGHT
There in the newly mown grass
in the shadow cast by freshly lit porch light,
something, something simple has put itself there as
a reminder that we are not alone.
Big brown eyes.
It is cordial, perhaps,
beautiful and non-threatening,
chewing on clover and listening for whatever
it is the arriving night wants to say;
things that we cannot dare imagine because we have
forgotten the value of trying to hear and
be heard – though our survival used to depend
on it – well, actually, it still does –
and so here I am in awe of little things,
simple little things, that haven’t forgotten
themselves, nor given up hope for our souls.
What do I do when I realize the rabbit feasting
at dusk understands things that I fear
well enough to expose himself in spite of them?
Certainly, I could learn, couldn’t I?
And there he goes, hopping,
moving deeper into the darkness
where life or death awaits.
He’s listening for it,
but he doesn’t stop his vigil with himself.
So maybe I could soften,
maybe I could,
and move a little further away from the light.
flight, fight, or freeze.
Haven’t we been here long enough to find
a better way?
I could turn the porch light off,
and step into the warm summer air,
and listen with the pricked hairs of my body
to whatever is out there,
whatever wants to come close.
The switch is greyed by finger prints.
The door knob is round and cold.
The hinges, creak.
take the risk
Photo: Eastern Cottontail © Jamie K. Reaser