In the slow world, chickadees repeat

the story of your life, its great unfolding,

so that you can notice all the fine details,

opening your owl-like eyes

like hoarfrost melting. Do not be surprised

if the spirit of questioning silence enters you.


In the slow world, you have plenty of time

to enjoy your unfamiliar surroundings,

whispering about you, lurching your heart

forward like the red roots of a cedar

reaches out to another. Do not be surprised;

it’s supposed to be like this in the slow world.


In the slow world, you will hear this mystery

of your life, the way it opens like ice melts

on a pond until only a small patch remains

before sinking out of sight. You will see this

with the same binocular vision of an owl

using its depth-perception to see.


In the slow world, the air holds the sound,

and we can feel its braille language.

Do not be surprised if you understand

what it is telling you. Do not be shocked

if words are watery to the touch, touching you,

or feels like wind between small feathers

gliding through the silence like a heart,

slowing and landing on a cedar branch.

These are the sounds of your life,

the near-distance and far-sight of your life,

chickadees repeating your life in a lovers’ voice,

in its slow, reassuring voices.