Today's poem is by Joe Wilkins


Wind in the blue cedars, the soap smell
                                                                of lupine giving way
to the bite of smoke and wet stone. Now crickets,
frogs, the first far
                                        call of a coyote—

Today, I have walked many slow miles
up this creek, and caught
not one silver trout. So

while the last light goes on spilling
over the mountains,
                                                        I stand in the rank weeds,
gnats slamming my ears. There's nothing
to be done for it.

                                        I lean my pole against a pine,
wing my shirt over my head, pull off my boots

                                                      and pants.
All my dimpled skin a pink shock
in the coming dark,
                        I wade out into fast water.

                                                                        Now, here,
on the backs of these cold ones, these brothers
of my own bones, the river stones,
I lay my whole self down:
                                        let creek water stream

across my belly, my chest, my throat—
on into the cathedral of the nostrils,
                                                        for it is no matter. There is breath
enough for rock and trout, lung and water,
blue cedar, smoke, and skin—

all these and more. The world is good.

Copyright © 2012 Joe Wilkins All rights reserved
from Notes from the Journey Westward
White Pine Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

Support Verse Daily
Sponsor Verse Daily!

Home    Archives   Web Weekly Features    About Verse Daily   FAQs  Submit to Verse Daily   Follow Verse Daily on Twitter

Copyright © 2002-2012 Verse Daily All Rights Reserved