Fox-Trot By the stream the fox and she-fox stood Nose to nose beneath the stars Dancing the music of the woods. The deer rapped a beat with their hooves, The ravens sang from raven hearts As by the stream the fox and she-fox stood. The great owl called as a great owl would, The squirrels all shimmied in the dark, Dancing the music of the woods. Then from the north a fierce wind blew And broke the starry dance apart By the stream where the fox and she-fox stood.
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When I was a boy, that was all I wanted-to grow a pair of wings and get up into the sky. I had a basement full of failed wing projects. Boards and capes and motors, even a pile of found feathers I once tried to glue together with a bottle of Elmer's; you should have seen your grandmother's face. But I never got any higher than the backyard fence I'd launch from. I never got inside a cloud. Your raven did.
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Throughout our lives friends enclose us like pairs of parentheses. They shift our boundaries; crater our terrain. They fume through the cracks of our tentative houses and parts of them always remain. Friendship asks the truth and wants the truth, hollows and fills, ages with us, and we through it. It cradles us like family. It is ecology and mystery and language - all three. Our grown-up friendships - especially the really meaningful ones- model for our children what we want them to have throughout their lives.
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