Loud Silence

Trills and tremolos, chirps and warbles
echo in the trees I see with closed eyes.
Wind flirts with my ears and then whooshes
over the treetops and down the slopes,
joining the river’s rush.

When I open my eyes, I see a doe has entered the frame,
ears and nose flicking rapidly,
black eyes scanning for threat.
I notice I am not breathing, slowly resume.
Her white tail swishes. I am well-hidden.
Silence cups and amplifies every sound–
falling leaves, a distant jay, a crackling bush–
making a deeply resonant chamber of this stand of pines,

Regretting the absence of a second witness, I move away.
No one will believe how loud the forest is.


© 2020 Susanne Donoghue

The Prophet
Dear John