Eighty-seven years continue on the crest of this lake
majestic kindness floats among her memories
we rest here as guests
where resident trees
recognize only their keeper.
It was another time for lovers
for whom the bell tolls
she, the Carol of this land
the gatekeeper of this forest
before us lives the matriarch
and the children she harnessed above the trees.
They return to breathe
they return to breathe life into these mountains
and paint the crescent moon
bright white against the sky
under snow, bright white
where the wounds are healing.
She, the collector of children
without the womb
a mother to those who return again
to grow, can it be so
that it takes a lifetime to recognize greatness
that this poem must exist as tribute
before the coming of death.
As the Carol roams, the paths of day and night
instill yet another breath into the mountains
open the door to yet another child
breathe life into the trees
breathe life into my own.