Don’t take my name in vain

Olli Heikkonen


Don’t take my name in vain,
for I’ll come when you call.
I come through forests,
scrape moss and bark with my antlers,
mute birdsong with my breath, blow
wet leaves and mouldered needles in the air.
I raise my nostrils to the wind,
the resins and rowan berries, I smell human longing.
Why do they long for me, my antlers
are bony and bring but pain. Why do they
build power lines, pave the forest path.
My hooves puncture the asphalt
and my eyes soak up the light.
Don’t invite me
to the shade of your apple trees. Don’t come
to the darkness of my forest.
Don’t come. The roots will cling to your feet,
thorn bushes tear your skin.