She steps off the school bus, walks into the woods, climbs a tree, opens a book.
Her two older sisters will not be coming home for a while.
Her mother and father until after that.
An empty house is not a home.
The branches of the tree hold no fear.
She teaches her dolls the ABC’s, reads to them—they listen well.
A Doctor of Education, she teaches, now, at the University—
comes home to me and to her two fur-children.