Bodacious Bear

by Rosemary Douglas Lombard and Heidi Tornieri

photo by Rosemary Douglas Lombard

Bodacious bear, I see you are sad,
rubbing again the tears from your blackened eyes
as if mourning still for the four who died
in trying to save the life of a bear
from the savage teeth of a leopard.

Yes, he said, I see that you care. My fear is
no one can save us now—bamboozled this time
by hungry human dreams of land, its water and trees,
room for its roads, its pastures, cutting my sole source of life,
my shoots of bamboo.

I am a sad, bodacious bear.
Isn’t there anything you can do?