by Matthew Olzmann

—Southern Pines, NC

Tell me what it’s like to live without

curiosity, without awe. To sail

on clear water, rolling your eyes

at the kelp reefs swaying

beneath you, ignoring the flicker

of mermaid scales in the mist,

looking at the world and feeling

only boredom. To stand

on the precipice of some wild valley,

the eagles circling, a herd of caribou

booming below, and to yawn

with indifference. To discover

something primordial and holy.

To have the smell of the earth

welcome you to everywhere.

To take it all in and then,

to reach for your knife.