Things are not what they seem.
Birds are today’s dinosaurs, not just
descendants of dinosaurs, the beasts
themselves, from whirring hummingbirds
to lanky cranes and herons. Learning this,
I run for cover when a seagull passes over.
Never know what such an ancient will deliver.

A friend explains God to her son,
all of five, as does her neighbor, her son.
One drags his mom outside, shouting
into the fierce sky, God, I want a train!
The other crawls timidly onto her lap,
whispers, so who do you like better,
really, Jesus, or Kokopelli?

Carol Barrett holds doctorates in both clinical psychology and creative writing. She coordinates the Creative Writing Certificate Program at Union Institute & University. Her books include Calling in the Bones, which won the Snyder Prize from Ashland Poetry Press, Drawing Lessons from Finishing Line Press, and Pansies from Sonder Press, a finalist for the 2020 Oregon Book Award in General Nonfiction. Her creative work has appeared in JAMA, Poetry International, Poetry Northwest, The Women’s Review of Books, and many other venues. A former NEA Fellow in Poetry, she lives in Bend, OR.