Barney Lake Trail

by Paul J. Willis

Jeffrey pine hold out their arms
where we begin. They drop their cones
whenever they are good and ready—
and we kick them aside with a little dance.

The creek is still here,
and the aspen too, all in a flutter,
nervous about company.

When we bed down for the night,
the stars will watch, and so will the bears.

They will say to each other, These people.

—Hoover Wilderness

—from Say This Prayer into the Past

Poem of the Month: August 2014

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