Old draperies of Spanish moss hang
on trees whose trunks
flare so they might stand
solid in a soil whose watery grip cannot hold.
In this wetland where a blackwater river oozes
slowly down to the gulf entering as a stain
that seems to tarnish and discolor but
offers nutrients to the sea, the air is still
and has the scent of damp abandoned barns.
What if an osprey flew in and landed
in the branches, would its cry be
for the loss of a vast tupelo-cypress swamp
logged, channelized and spoiled.