Almost a Conversation

I have not really, not yet, talked with otter
about his life.

He has so many teeth, he has trouble
with vowels.

Wherefore our understanding
is all body expression —



He swims like the sleekest fish,
he dives and exhales and lifts a trail of bubbles.
Little by little he trusts my eyes
and my curious body sitting on the shore.

Sometimes he comes close.
I admire his whiskers
and his dark fur which I would rather die than wear.



He has no words, still what he tells about his life
is clear.

He does not own a computer.
He imagines the river will last forever.
He does not envy the dry house I live in.
He does not wonder who or what it is that I worship.

He wonders, morning after morning, that the river
is so cold and fresh and alive, and still
I don't jump in.



~~ Mary Oliver ~~
(Evidence)