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EPISODE 6: Connie summons a deer

Inspired by a poem of Todd’s in Poetry Magazine, “The Hush of the Very Good,” Connie became Todd’s very first private commission in 2017. The project ended with an extraordinary encounter in the snow-filled forests of northern Wisconsin.

In this special holiday episode of TAPIT, Todd reaches back out to Connie after all these years, to revisit the magic they made together.

The Poem

A Deer

It seems to me to be again as if

our twenty years were no more than a dream—

This morning, driving in the steam of dawn

in an autumn woods, I happened upon

a yearling deer that was, unlike her tawny

sisters, a brilliant white. All white and white

and white she was, a great astonishment

of white—

her body a flag, a flame of snow

in the bower, she was a glow, a ghost

in the mist around her. And oh, my dear, how

I wished you were there!

She trembled so

to see me slow to the gravel and halt. I had to

wait her out, so filled with praise was I, my

heart. What grace, what art, what eloquence

she bore! Though no less and no more a deer

than any deer in the forest, still it seemed these

trees were holier for her being there, in the

recitative of a leafing breeze.

I wanted

eternity with her, but I was not her owner,

and soon—with a jolt—like a joyful spirit she

bolted over, joining the plainer flock that

waited invisibly on the other side—like a bride—

and with her into the ether danced my pride

in having even briefly known her.


Would you like to know more about this poem? Click here to access a PDF that includes Todd's analysis of this poem's symbols.


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