There is a road I drive

many evenings

between a friend’s house and mine

To the west

a jagged line of firs

black against the evening sky.

The sky, deep blue

or dusty blue-black

maybe golden yellow

scudding clouds back lit with the set sun

A sliver of moon might

kiss the mountains to the west

Along that ridge of snow-capped mountains

is that a front? 

Moving in with rain or snow

but missing our small peninsula

due to a freak of wind patterns

The Rainshadow

Some days in late spring

red clover blooms

A few weeks later

fields of wild daisies

takes over the west side pasture.

A sign of both growth and decay

a farmer no longer interested in

protecting their investment in the soil

The daisies are stunning

a blanket of white

roots as tough as steel wool

controlling all it touches.

The short drive road leads

into second growth, large timber

you can almost close your eyes

imagine driving this

before the first growth virgin timber was cut

Giant bases of fir and cedar

covered this place since the last ice left

10,000 years ago

I’ve talked to those that saw these hills

before the one-tree trucks hauled them all away.

Exercising caution before I

head down the long hill to home

watching for the police car

a guy who lives near here

sitting in wait

as a cougar looking for prey

I slow to watch for the eyes of his car

sleepily waiting for a fool

to come too close too fast.

There is a sense of place I’ve found

a tempo, and one that I’ve looked for a long time

waiting here

The shore, the tide, the fog soaked farms

The bawling cattle in the dawn

A garden that wraps itself around me

in the summer night

a thump of a ship passing at 3 AM

waking me from a fitful sleep.

Some nights, late after midnight

listening as the engines slide past

heading outbound

into a series of waves

coming from somewhere

far out to sea.


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