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Staring intently at my feet,

I long to protect minuscule frogs

that shoot across our path,

oblivious to their

life or death

situation.

Unbearable heat beats on the

back of my neck, exposed

for the frogs’ sake,

until we step into shade’s relief

and blink, unseeing,

at the sacred before us.

Thinking it simply a pleasant spot

overlooking the water,

we sink into handmade chairs

and listen.

I never knew loud

could be so peaceful,

or that the overwhelming sound of

birds and breeze

could silence the noise in my head.

All the pain and fear

fumble their way to the surface,

seeping out onto the wood,

spilling over the edge into

the trees below and rolling downhill

to mingle with the water.

Tears flow down my cheeks

as I look with new eyes.

A doe and fawn gently step to water’s edge

beneath trees on the far side,

and I am quiet.

I am still.

I see.