THE LION RETURNS

lionA high wind from the northeast barrels down the throat of the big valley,
tossing the oak’s heavy limbs like sheets on a line.
The wind is not gentle today, nor is its voice a whisper
but rather the muffled roar of a fast train in a morning’s light.
The lion of March has returned and blows young leaves off trees
and roughly presses flower heads back into their beds.
Cool and sharp and damp the lion’s breath stabs skin and bones
while the golden sun shines on in approval.
No clouds mar the smooth blue complexion of the sky,
no birds travel the currents of its highways.
Overhead a sharp silver thunderbird spreads its wings
and wrestles with headwinds on its journey north.
The surface of the creek trembles with nervous ripples
while green trash cans roll and cars rock gently at red lights.
Dogs with their walkers prance the pathways of the park,
tails plumed and waving, high noses drinking in spring aromas.
Holding my head in its windy roar, the lion catches my breath,
then flings it away.

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