When You Wake a Child

Zora Nap

If you look long enough
her breath lifts and falls
like the wings of birds

You are frozen at the doorway
by the quiet movement
of earth each year
in shaping bones
or filling in the illegible
wrinkles on the palms
of her hands
or the sky
of her voice

Her voice tickles the leaves
like a summer wind
crossing and recrossing
the delicate paper of sea
on which the maps
of her life are spread