No man is so guileless asthe serpent. The lonely whiterabbit on the roof is a startwitching its ears at the rain.The llama intricatelyfolding its hind legs to be seatednot disdains but mildlydisregards human approval.
What joy when the insouciantarmadillo glances at us and doesn'tquicken his trottingacross the track and into the palm brush.What is this joy? That no animalfalters, but knows what it must do?That the snake has no blemish,that the rabbit inspects his strange surroundingsin white star-silence? The llamarests in dignity, the armadillohas some intention to pursue in the palm-forest.
Those who were sacred have remained so,holiness does not dissolve, it is a presenceof bronze, only the sight that saw itfaltered and turned from it.An old joy returns in holy presence.
–Denise LevertovPoems: 1960-1967