I once lived in a cabin in the woods.
I first learned that hearing a rustling
in the leaves made by skinny black legs
moving among the pine trees
does not mean it's a bear, it means
the farmers' cows have broken
out of the pasture again.
Some time later, I learned that when
there is a rustling in the leaves and
the cat at the window is growling,
it means it is a Black Bear with cub in tow.
It also means I should count on the cat
and not be halfway between the cabin
and bear to realize that she knew what
she was growling about.
I click on internet maps and find the contour
of the little mountain that I belonged to.
I switch to satellite view and see the long
cow pasture butting up against the woods.
I trace the lane past the Big Pond where
the cats and I would walk every day.
I follow the dirt lane down to the cabin,
which sits in front of the Little Pond.
I know there are still turkey coveys
traveling through, that there are
Pieliated Woodpeckers following the lane to
their nest halfway up to the ridge.
I know the moon still backlights the trees on the ridge
and holds their silhouettes in yellow shine.
My heart knows it's still there,
but now I can only visit from
a satellite in the sky.