The world exists just fine without
our appreciation. It is not for us
that the dandelions bloom in tides of yellow

across the valley floor. Not for us
that the elk stream in a slow brown current
before disappearing into Englemann spruce.

And then there are the tiny empires
of grasshoppers, ants and bees—
and the underground realms of prairie dogs

and worms and rhizomes and moles—
intricate and entirely oblivious to praise.
And still, this drive toward gratitude.

Still this tug to pull over the car and marvel,
this impulse to offer the world our attention,
as if being very still and alert is as vital

to the moment as scurry and swerve,
scamper and stride. Perhaps it is.

Posted by kind permission of Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer.