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  • Kimberley Pittman-Schulz

A Language Larger Than Words

“And this, our life . . . finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in every thing.”

— Shakespeare

Nurse Log

Steam floats up from a prone body,

an old log, mossy and damp.

I go, lie beside it, whisper,

let’s be organic together.

Out of the lichened wood, deer ferns

and the thumb of a coyote bush take root.

Fox scat in the shape of a cross

marks a passage.

There is a language larger

than words, the way breath rising

licks everything on its way up

and won’t be contained.

A varied thrush thuds to ground,

his voice a wooden whistling.

Red mud stains robe hem,

rumpled cuff, exposed wrist bone,

palm to redwood corpse.

Quiet again—just this

scuttling of cool air through weeds,

my fingers flushed with touching.


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