Nez Perce Creek

Three great blue herons
Share a patch of clover by the stream
Four circling ospreys
Childish peeps and fleet shadows
Seventeen burning sienna dragonflies
Mate, divebomb, clatter off in clusters
Five steaming springs
Warm the river bottom black with algae
One dark knight golden eagle
One last yellow butterfly
One fathomless blue with sea-foam cumulus
Six mallards, ascending sizes
Lazy-float downstream
Mild and curious as ducks will be
Six velvet antler tips on a shy
River-dipping mule deer
Twenty-six wise trout
Cool in the hollow
Thirty-two warm ripe cherries
Enrich a poet
Two honeygold feather-brushed creek banks
Tinged with August’s last green
Provide place
For fierce and gentle alike