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Sometimes, in spring,
chelonian patience rewards a soft gaze

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as when a passing cloud unveils
the hidden carapace of an ancient turtle

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that smartly recedes from any hint of a chase.

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But then in fall, over twenty yards from the water,
a recently hatched snapper

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pauses perilously at noon
underfoot on the lawn
for any to see

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before proceeding at dusk, toward the brush and the trees,
and a home in the creek.

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