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Evening in the swamp...

Light begins to fade, and darkness creeps in
Just as water crept into this timber
After the beaver dams backed up the flow
Of what was a small stream, clear and flowing
Pines go first, rotting until the tops break,
Falling into a tangle of thick vines
The poplars, waterlogged and leaning
Soon they will be hollow, providing homes
For screech owls and wood ducks, and the raccoon
That left the seedy droppings on this log
I am standing on to get a better view
Of all that is happening in these woods
Order from chaos, from death comes life
The circle is eternal, everything changes
From woodland to wetland, the cycle goes
One dies off and another one is born
Abundant waterfowl now calls this home
Where the squirrels once buried acorns,
The water is two feet deep and rising
I would have to wade to my deer stand now
My beloved holly, she's a leaning
Before long, she too will fall over
The timber is dying off in a swath
The once thick canopy, now open sky
Only the skeletons of big trees remain
I hear the mallards calling, flying in
Their number, I'm sure, in the hundreds,
Most ducks I've seen at one time
There's no waterfowl hunting aloud here,
And these ducks must know they are safe
Soon the frog songs will begin in this swamp
And I will paddle through the obstacles
That I once had to weave through on foot
When the bream move into old stump holes
That I used to step in, up to my hip
To fish among the tree trunks where I would sit,
Many a days on dry logs, pondering life,
Now I can float and contemplate my place
In the universe, the earth, and this swamp
Darkness is as thick as the mud that mires,
Sucking at my feet as I take steps home
I'll return here at daylight, to explore
My new habitat, and home in the swamp.



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