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Dear Deer

What slender legs stand trembling in the brush,
bid by your gentle mother, "Fold and rest."
Beneath the spring leaves, a shadowed hush,
the dappled veil mimics your coat, spot-dressed.

A firm tap of tiny hooves, she leaves;
and you, new babe, by nature's orders clear,
by obedience that refuge receives,
assures, again, survival of the deer.

Without a sound, the narrow nose appears,
flanked by fan-like ears on either side.
Your heartbeat speeds, but compliance steers,
and your God-given instinct says, "Time, bide."

Damp tender touching from a mother's tongue,
releases you to nuzzle and draw near,
the mother's milk provided for the young,
tiny muzzle wrinkling blissfully, dine here.

Small tummy full, no danger, Mother sees;
slim legs, now fortified, surprise with verve,
you leap and skip delightful under trees,
like a bouncing lamb, maneuver bump and curve..

Will you grow up to bear an antler crown,
first spikes, then points, an awesome count to see?
Or, growing up to be a doe look down,
upon a spotted baby, two or three?

Oh, mother deer, with care, to left and right,
please judge the speed and the proximity.
Watch that your babies, mesmerized by light,
won't be the next roadway fatality.

From innocent and sheltered bouncing fawn,
to desire of trophy, sportsman's gourmet meat,
viewed with thrills, your graceful image drawn,
the artist and the child, your beauty greet.

10/01/2015 Carol Welch
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