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Early in the morning deer appear
out of the dark, a flicker of eyes.
They allow me to get quite near,

then vanish noiseless in the brush—
like stars over a busy city—
like lines that come in midnight’s hush

and are gone at dawn—like a whirlwind that scoops
up trash from a parking lot, vivifies it
briefly in a marionette dance, then drops—

like the presence of God: undeniably there,
then absent beyond any utterable prayer.

— Jeffrey Bilbro