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To A Child In The Garden
by Hannah Nguyen

What draws you,
holds your awe
beneath the arc
of crossing branches,
where a kaleidoscope of light
sifts down?

Is it the filament of spider,
or cursive gleam of snail print,
a ladybug's ascent into air?

You, of nose-deep studiousness
into pin cushions of pollen,
worrier of where the ants go
when it rains,
seeker of the paper-crisp, split leaves,

what roots me at the windowsill
but the fineness
of your long, languid lashes,
eyes wide-set, deer dark
in slow wonder,
the flesh of your ears thin,
showing the trace of veins
in sunlight,
your shell pink fingers and nails,
their crescent white tips

as you collect freshly fallen petals
of breeze-swept magnolias
into your cupped hands

where whole afternoons gather,
hushed upon your small, soft palms.


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