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John Noland

Oregon

John Noland lives among sea lions and cormorants, big trees and beaches, black oystercatchers and elk on Oregon’s south coast. He has published 5 poetry chapbooks, poetry and essays in many literary and nature magazines, including Orion Nature Quarterly, Portland Review, Chicago Review, Laurel Review and Coyote Journal.

Considering Death
John Noland

It is easy to accept
that the earth
makes no exceptions,
but it is hard to believe

 

those days
when black and gold
butterflies
ride the air
like dancers
spiraling out
to touch the sun.


Once
when I was very young
and very still,
pretending
to be a flower,
a butterfly
nuzzled my face.

‚Äč

I held my breath
and in that instant
felt how the world
goes on

without us,


how we
who would light
the world
with our presence,
light it
also with our absence.