(The publisher offers a discounted S&H rate during the prepublication window: until June 17, 2016. Books are scheduled to ship on August 12.)
From “Wafford’s Eyes.” ….Each shining bead reflects a single star but hides / your mysteries behind their blackness. // Tell me, tortoise the size of my hand, how can I read their secrets?
From “Aesop’s Winter Race.” “Like slow tortoise, degreed for persistence, / the snowflakes slowly race / toward piled higher, piled deeper / than ever before in this place. / … / Like rabbit, cars forget the old race / and seek a sheltered place to sleep, / the road abandoned, tracks effaced / while snowflakes earn their Ph.D.
From “Flick of an Eyebrow.” ….What matters is...the surge of her tortoise muscles a motor against my hand / that somehow lifts my feet to follow her will, // and the moments a happy conjunction of words slides together amid the wonder of near-infinite combination.
From “Communication.” ….Diode, at my feet, attentive, / her head angled up toward the birds / from brown, sun-dappled leaves, // hasn’t moved a muscle since we settled here. / Now the birds are farther off, / and gusts of wind are shaking the canopy. // Trees say to each other, Sway. / We sit still and listen.
—Robert Michael Pyle, author of Evolution of the Genus Iris and Chinook & Chanterelle; Winner of the John Burroughs Medal for Natural History Writing