The Sun Underfoot Among the Sundews
An ingenuity too astonishing to be quite fortuitous is this bog full of sundews, sphagnum- lines and shaped like a teacup. A step down and you're into it; a wilderness swallows you up: ankle-, then knee-, then midriff- to-shoulder-deep in wetfooted understory, an overhead spruce-tamarack horizon hinting you'll never get out of here. But the sun among the sundews, down there, is so bright, an underfoot webwork of carnivorous rubies, a star-swarm thick as the gnats they're set to catch, delectable double-faced cockleburs, each hair-tip a sticky mirror afire with sunlight, a million of them and again a million, each mirror a trap set to unhand believing, that either a First Cause said once, "Let there be sundews," and there were, or they've made their way here unaided other than by that backhand, round- about refusal to assume responsibility known as Natural Selection. But the sun underfoot is so dazzling down there among the sundews, there is so much light in that cup that, looking, you start to fall upward.
From The Collected Poems of Amy Clampitt, published by Alfred A. Knopf. Copyright © 1997. Used with permission from the Estate of Amy Clampitt.