Flo and I Hike Along the Platte


I’m trying to enjoy the burr oak’s golds,

             the maple’s reds, but God, these cramps are Hell—

ruining this afternoon just like

             so many pairs of panties, bedsheets, nights

that could have broken into blossom if

             it wasn’t always autumn in my life.

I want to hike without abandon, see

             the pirouetting of vermillion

foliage splashing into flowing streams

             that whisk them deeper through the scarlet woods

where deer tracks slip into the gully’s mud.

             I want to watch these torrents flush this forest

of its memories, its fallen leaves,

             witness how a season of debris

empties at the mouth into the Platte.

             I want to feel the magic of this body,

how it makes room within the womb

             to bloom again come March, the blossoms

now nothing but a feeling underneath

             the surface of this forest’s sodden skin.

I know the sanguine leaves give birth to spring,

             but my lady parts are hurting like a bitch.

Copyright © 1999 – 2024 Juked