The Deer

The first time I saw her, it was early
      evening. I'd stood
a long time in the meadow,
      let dusk
              work its way in. Redwings crackled
from the marsh. Crescent moon, sharp, a white
      splinter in the blue. Spiderwort clusters
            --three-pronged stars caught
      in purple glass jars. Deer time.

Perfect adjectives to describe the above scene! Colin Butgereit, age 20

            The doe, twenty yards away.
Mossy back, black eyes and nose, ears erect.
      We studied one another. She
            surprised me, taking two swift leaps
closer. Stock-still, both of us, until

It's almost as if the doe is just as fascinated with her audience. Rachel Talen, age 21

            she'd had her fill, leapt away
in high, easy arcs like the moon's.

The way the leaps are compared to the moon makes them easy to picture. Hannah Fleming, age 14

            Saw her often after that,
                  alone or with her fawn
in the meadow, sometimes under the aspens,
      silver leaves soughing
            like bone-meal through a sieve.

The descriptions of nature are so crisp and vivid—I can see everything as I read the poem. Kara Madden, age 22.

Last night, I went out late, hoping
      to catch the aurora,
            forgetting her.
Moon made my shadow big
      in front of me. I spread a jacket out on the grass,
            lay down. One satellite passing
Berenice's Hair, Dipper stars strong and blue,

In the above lines, these are all things we could point out in the night sky. Colin Butgereit, age 20
      Cassiopeia washed by earth light,
            ghostly in her chair,
The descriptions of the constellations are unique to this poem! Hannah Fleming,
age 14.

Scorpio blurred in footlights of the city.
      Then, I knew
            she was there. Sat up, startled,
            her silhouette
                  close in front of me.
      She snorted loud, deliberate,
            retrieveed to trees. I shivered.
      That breathy whine audible, she stalked
the periphery, circling me.
      What made me think I knew anything
about fear? What me me think
      those stars were mine?

I love this last question that is left with the reader. It suggests that the stars belong first and foremost to the natural world, if they belong to anybody. They came before us, and will outlast our small lives on earth. Kara Madden, age 22
What an interesting surprise- the doe is experiencing the same fear as the author. She makes an ordinary experience extraordinary! Rachel Talen, age 21
Through the 3rd Eye was supported in its inception by the Grand Rapids Humanities Council and is currently made possible by continued volunteer effort and private support. Copyright 2013.