Be careful before you drown in alligator tears,
the fears of nothing mounting to something,
saving waves goodbye until distraction reigns;
Just once I’d like your smile to send me off,
to see the bamboo’s strength without being cut,
but sometimes the sky must be torn down
one cloud at a time before daylight breaks,
the yawning blackness our mountain trail
toward another morning and its miles of skin.
Would you rather be embraced by camellias,
bound to the reach of their pistils, sacrificing
not only the power to burn but also nourish,
or unfettered and anxious as the wings of birds
flitting between branches as quick as thought,
always hungry for flight yet patient in plenty?