Desperate maneuvers to
scoop up her innocence,
to cup her childhood in my hands
and rub it like frozen earth
over my face,
holy water in desert cave.
I feel its drops on my lips.
I let the melt run down my chin.
If only the moment of her unconditional love
burned forever in my heart and
the power of painted laughter
wrapped around me, wisteria clinging
to a silver poplar.
She slips through my hands
each time I try to contain her,
and spills onto wide plank pine boards
mixing with day old stains.
Unfolding of life reaches for every branch
of every tree
and lustily eclipses even the rafters
of the sky. I can do nothing
but watch her fingers clenched like fiddleheads
waiting to unfurl.