N  a  p a  l  m     H  e  a  l  t  h     S  p  a  :     R  e  p  o  r  t     2  0  1  0






The Crippled Doe


dreaming as I rounded

the bend, my paddle still:



a wounded doe

                        hobbled into

the stream



the wound, fractured thigh or

muscle torn in wild dodge thru trees

(hunters’ missed shot?)


seeing me, she turned

frantic, swimming

ahead. ears

            laid back to listen.



I slowed & gave her room,

yet she did not cross,  came up



            & hobbled along sand bank

then back into the racing currents,

finally crossing,


standing on the shore—

she   did not plunge

into cedars & safety, but

stared directly


in my eyes as I passed, still—