Sound Advice

Thinking of becoming lost—
the five-year-old’s feeling
of emptiness in the midst of color—

The hermit thrush has sung
from an invisible branch.

The thrush will not move from
the same branch
while he is singing.

I move from tuft to tuft
under my feet in a boggy forest.
I will not get lost while the thrush sings.

I will move from black branch to black branch
in the sun-defying forest, and so

I cannot become lured
into the black glow of emptiness.
But what if the thrush stops singing?

Richard Fenton Sederstrom was raised and lives in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona and the North Woods of Minnesota. Sederstrom is the author of eight books of poetry, his latest book, The Dun Book, published by Jackpine Writers' Bloc, was released last fall. Read other articles by Richard Fenton.