GIFTS FOR THE RIVER

A living notebook of testimony, art, image, experience, observation and conservation of and for the river.

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Birch Deer — A Fragment

Updated: Sep 26, 2018

by Ari Berk


It was the First Morning of the world

and no form had yet been fixed.

If you thought about something hard enough,

you might dream about it.

And if you dreamed about it

you might hear a portion of its song.

And if you sang its song,

You might borrow its shape

for a while.

So it was that Birch wanted to see something more of the forest,

To know the distant stands of beech. To walk among the great oaks. To meet the reeds that waved along the river. And Birch wished, just once, tfrom its roots and run.

So Birch dreamed Deer.

Dreamed its long limbs into legs

Dreamed its sap down into hooves and into a head.

Then Birch walked as Deer walked

Then Birch ran as Deer ran

Then Birch leaped as Deer leapt

And Birch was glad

and walked upon the deer-paths as a deer might do

and walked along the river and met the reeds and the River folk

And in those days the River folk were great storytellers.

And the Birch stayed among them for a time...

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© 2018 by Central Michigan University

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