Prompt Images

The early spring woods

smell of clean Earth,

a hint of bitter ice

trailing on the wind. My dog

and I soak up the nascent

sunshine, spongy trails

beneath our feet yielding to

mud, fresh green buds poking

through last season’s crispy leaves.


A rustling from the forest floor

perks her ears, and suddenly she

launches, tail starched and stiffly

saluting her prey. I watch, enrapt,

as joy vaults her into what she is

bred to do. She lands, riveted,

still and silent. Then, growling,

she springs at each rustle,

circles and snaps. Mesmerized,

I envy her oneness with

her task, the Earth, her prey:

she flows naturally into

everything else.


The battle fading, I creep

closer, observing the

outcome. A garter snake lies

twisted, belly to the sun,

a bead of blood

above its eye.


The beauty of Joy is its

fleetingness: brushing your

cheek like a succulent kiss,

it leaves as suddenly

as It appeared.

Heather Shaff

Heather is a book designer based in Boston who, when she’s not writing or taking care of the fam, can be found racing her bike, enjoying nature, or just daydreaming.

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