When the Woodpecker Knocks

When the Woodpecker Knocks

Even the young dogs answer when

the woodpecker knocks, tapping 

at the rough doors of aspen 

and curling shutters of birch. We watch 

in sepia, tails up, breathless 

to be fern deep in the answering dapple

and they do.

Like the old dog still dreaming on the floor

of quick white rabbits

and lithe swamps, an unseen bud quivers, chasing

the undeniable flash of light

and touches it.  

Meanwhile, the woodpecker slides along its ribbon 

of air, moss-thick with snipe-spool 

and mud-hum, asking.

Even the saw whet owl, riveted 

by song, pauses 

in the green answer of trees.

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