The Preserve by Edea Baldwin


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Small grey pebbles skitter ahead of us,
thrown as you kick at the path
playfully, eager to share what you've found,
hoping he will come today.
Our fingers loosely entwined,
you pull me deeper into the preserve,
off the well-worn trail into tall, soft grass
where tiny flowers, pinks and lavendars,
shimmer in a late afternoon breeze.
Nearing the copse of willows sheltering
the waterfall, you sink to your knees,
gently pulling me down next to you
and "shushing" us both with
a finger pressed against noiseless lips.

We wait in a stillness broken only
by our soft breathing and the
distant chatter of birds.
Far in the distance, the low growl of
thunder echoes across the glade.
We are content to wait in silence,
sharing the simple joy
of presence and anticipation.

After a while, your hand tightens around mine
as a small, honey-brown deer
emerges from the trees to graze at the water's edge.
I see your eyes watching, like tiny sapphires
reflecting the lowering sun.
Later, I will recall their brightness as I softly kiss both lids,
shut in the drowsiness following our pleasure.