I’m almost lulled to sleep and quit my book
by the voice overhead of green on green—
like the shift and tumble of a brook
but spoken by a wind through the trees.
A yellow butterfly dips and quivers
like a lazy autumn leaf. Then a crack
and all thought is lost of streams and rivers,
and the pale sky is startled from its nap
when a huge seedpod plummets to the ground
and lands like a pronouncement on its leaves.
Listen! In that split-second is the sound
of life and its eternal mystery:
the alignment of time and existence
that forced the seed to split from the tree.
The force that causes every leaf to fall
can be heard if I lay open my heart.
The butterfly and I almost missed it—
and I know less of life than at the start.