|Cut sapling stump protrudes thumb-thick|
A subtle inch above the trail,
Perfectly poised to play a trick
On careless runners, should they fail
To spy the snag. Along come I.
"A victim!" gloats the former tree.
"I grew in peace upon this high
Ridge line, until his kin chopped me
To clear their path. Now it's my turn.
Revenge is sweet—ha, ha!" it smirks.
I notice nothing, but soon learn
A lesson as the teacher lurks.
The nubbin catches my right toe
And suddenly, I know not how,
I tumble head-first to bestow
A kiss upon the weathered brow
Of Mother Earth. Her granite breast
Repels my hand's abrupt advance.
Instead I find my nose is pressed
Against her stone-cold cheek. Our dance?
Quite brief. My mouth is full of grit.
Bruises on elbows, scrapes on knees,
I stagger to my feet and spit.
"Thanks, Ma'am!" I say, "But no more please:
One Terra Firma do-si-do
Is all there's time for—gotta go!"