I won’t show you my face.
Dawn and dusk, cool nights,
I slip out and observe my succulent prey,
and I may be watching you!
I stretch out cool under saw palmetto
letting Florida sun bake and buzz and bleach,
but I move like lightening when evening falls,
and in the peripheral shadows of your dreams
I’m stalking you, too.
July 1990 from "Voices of Gaia"
"Voices of Gaia" is a series of poems which I devote to endangered species in their own voices. The Florida Panther has been on the endangered list since 1973. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has recently released one female into the wild at Picayune Strand State Forest, and will soon release a young male. The female panther and her brother had been raised at the White Oak Conservation Center in Yulee since they were 5 months old. The FWC rescued the two as kittens after their mother was found dead.