Once I walked
through a forest.
It was high
in the mountains.
The air was clear and thin.
The stars shone brightly,
the outline of the forest canopy in sharp relief
like the background
to a stop-motion silhouette fairy tale.

The children are awake.
Once I knew that.
Once I heard their voices.
Once I had a voice.
I was a child in a forest.
I was a tree in a fairy tale.
The stars were a flying carpet,
its jeweled fabric undulating
with the rotation of the earth
and procession of seasons.