Madrona on the San Juans

Madrona on the San Juans
by Paul J. Willis

(Arbutus menziesii)

Madrona, that strip tease of yours
     is working again. The way you pearl
out of your bark, following your natural
     bent, turns my head in smooth surprise.
Your arms reach over the bay with longing,
     that supple skin, slightly sunburned,
blooming like a dusky rose.

—Jones Island State Park

—from Deer at Twilight: Poems from the North Cascades