Garden Lesson

A poem.

Garden Lesson

My little cousin picked
her up, said, "Hello, Nancy!"
and her body squeezed into
itself, timid as
sleeping grass. We counted
to ten, till her flagpole
eyes re-emerged, two
hypnotic fingers dowsing our faces
for danger. Later, we watched

her crawl away, slow
and barge-like, patiently wading
through a sticky pool of
fall; behind her, a
white snail's trail, opalescent
in the wet morning light,
bright as ammolite.

Mohamad Atif Slim

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