I Go To the Sea to Scream

oceanI go to the sea to scream

one of those ‘from the bottom of my ocean gut twisted red with rage’ sorta screams

a deep heartache ‘WTF is going on!?’ kinda wail

a belly full of ‘when are these goddamn killings gonna stop?’

a ‘great barrier reef is dying we’ve killed the bones of the sea’ sorta grief

a ‘plastic and wire in the stomachs of fish/birds/turtles/whales more plastic than fish’ kinda shout

I climb hand over fist
to the nearest mountain pass
when I need to roar

a ‘I can’t take this madmax bullshit any more’ type of roar
a ‘pound my fists against the granite bloody knuckles’ sorta howl
a ‘I can’t believe this shit is still happening’ kinda bark that will bite your head right off
a ‘they cut every last tree every goddamn one who the hell does that?!’ sorta cry

I go to a poem to rage
you can put anything down
on the page

like a ‘when are we gonna learn?!’ kinda rage
my ‘head spinning in disbelief’ kinda rage
a ‘why we poisoning our air/water/soil/bodies/minds and can’t stop?’ kinda bellow

and sometimes, when I’m roared out
eyes weary with tears
I go deep into the forest
in that dark green deep silence

whispering ‘what are we gonna do?’

and that great growl in my gut
becomes a hibernating bear snoring
like a slow trickle
from the peaceful creek
emerging from deep time

and I hear

a ‘come back to me’ sorta whisper
a ‘it’s late, but not too late’ kinda whisper
a ‘slow down, listen, and fall into my arms
I’ve been waiting for you all’
kinda whisper


Today in Fall Foraging News

IMG_6546So many treasures today:

72 walnuts (and a gorgeous red leaf Walnut tree)
Two tarps for winterizing
a giant Monterey pine cone as big as my head
a creek still flowing
an apple tree by the old fire station
a milk crate
coyote scat
a maple bush (that’s what I call it)
an Alameda striped racer snake
a new secret spot under….(wait, I can’t say)
a Mir-hug
a katieface
and 4-5 poems, some of them keepers

Mary Oliver’s Truancy

FullSizeRender[1]Only record she ever broke was
for skipping school
because the Ohio hills had more to teach her than her teachers
Or her broken home
red rage running
from her dark family of things
to which she didn’t belong

Wandering the forest with Whitman
in her knapsack
hunting fish and clams
berries and words
She traveled to the moon and back
with her pencil
HER one wild and precious life

Giving the world 50,000 words
foraged from the landscape
lining the pockets of hungry souls

We now have a thousand mornings
of wild geese
and big-eyed grasshoppers
calling our soft animal bodies home
on bright summer days
because of Mary Oliver’s truancy

The EverNew

imagesWhere do you go
when you go away?

Are you playing hide and seek
with the earth?

Are you like the winter
tucking yourself into jubilant hibernation
to gather yourself for the next scene?

Are you like me,
disappearing into the cave
of your own soul
in order to emerge renewed?

waning, waning, waning into
the going under,
the dying, dark night of the soul
then birthing seed of the new,
waxing, waxing, waxing into fullness

You are the EverNew,
to whom everything apprentices itself

So we can stand, arms outstretched
and astonished, exclaiming:

What a wonderful night, I’ve never seen this one before!


IMG_6440Redwood Creek, Elevation 685 ft., Population 4.3 million, Temperature 61

old needles and a few big arms
thrown down by last night’s midnight wind
cover the perfect messy floor
the price of being tall
nice contribution, group effort

all green and brown and redwood
except the bright blue plastic bag
full of dog shit
so frequent (one of 11), you’d think they too were native
but it’s likely they’re an invasive species

“Come on, boy, come on. Good boy!”

so a story goes
rainbow trout named here
from this very creek
now more bed than flow
(they’re making a comeback)

that’s probably a good thing

(Stay on Defined Trail)
rock graveyard looking thirsty
in deep autumn

middle-aged woman tight yoga clothes
playing motown, trips on roots

“Did your dad quit drinking, or was it smoking?”
“I think he quit smoking.”

yet a flow finds its way further down
from a spring hidden like the
larvae of California newt
tricky toxic Taricha torosa
going through growing pains
also awaiting November rain
(a camper croaked from accidentally boiling one in his morning coffee)

heart appears among tree debris
floating on the water

probably a good thing

jet engines roar (Alaska Airlines)
woosh of the large bird
elderly chinese man shoes so white playing music

eternal wrestling match
with silence
or is that just my conflict mind?

“You know, I think I saw something about that on her Facebook,
she was gonna hike the John Muir Trail by herself. Crazy.”

probably a good thing

Ravens hopscotch on upper limbs
bounce from one bare branch to another
breaking them
can’t tell if they’re squacking from the fun of it
or fighting (also for the fun of it)
either way, tearing the forest down in the process

probably a good thing

poison oak brightest thing in the forest
burnt red rusty orange yellow green
like toxic newt skin, poison has its beauty

probably a good thing

smiles wide at me
I’m looking talking with a small round bird
hopping up the side of course bark
breaking bugs

“I was thinking about getting one of those…”

Sequoia sempervirens sighs
breathes cool into my blood
making it redder
lungs lighter
never take clean air for granted

probably a good thing

Like a dog, creek birds tilt tiny heads
look at me like,