Today's poem is by Holly J. Hughes

Steering by Monarchs

      She forgot the instruments and steered instead
      by butterflies knowing nothing human could be that sure.

      —Alison Hawthorne Deming, The Monarchs

Fog thick enough to lick, horizon a blanket,
pearl gleam of sun. Sure, the sea trips
the mind, conjures creatures but what's
this dusty heartbeat of wing?
First one. Then another. And another.
How to account for this river of wings
flowing south through generations?
She watches the monarchs drift—
cloud of orange and black—
Western mind says discount,
but knows better than to dismiss.
She abandons the instruments,
tracks by dusty heartbeat,
joins the wavering, certain path.

Copyright © 2007 Holly J. Hughes All rights reserved
from Boxing the Compass
Floating Bridge Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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