Otter Creek Road February 9, 2001
Don’t get excited — when I say
one reason god loves cedar trees at night
is it’s so dark in there he can hide and watch us up close
and no one see he’s there, and that tickles him —
it’s just a description. It’s just to make you sniff
the black between the unseen laced green branches.
There are two rules against writing about god.
The one that’s in fashion in poetry now
and god’s own older one, which we are incapable
of breaking. Don’t get excited. If tonight you were
here by the water with me looking into this cedar
we could be puzzled together how close we seem
to being able to say what the mystery is, certain
it is something we know. I can call it god
if I want to. It is safe from names.
Copyright © 2022 by Klyd Watkins. Excerpted from The Wind Is Sacred There (Hand to Mouth). All rights reserved. From 1980 until 2017, Klyd Watkins lived near Radnor Lake State Natural Area in Nashville. While working in real estate, he would sometimes play hooky and go to Radnor and walk around looking for poems. Sometimes it got a little out of hand.