Raindrops the Size of Marbles


The news was not good.
The news they were waiting
for would not be good.
The options would be bad.

Bashō had been walking
for a long time now.
Nothing celebrated.
If you can’t see

the moon or the flower
in everything
you’re just walking
in your own shit.

Jim Bodeen
August 2014


You won’t find the hike
on any map, it’s not there.

No, but it used to be.
The first two legs,

yes, but not the one
overlooking the glacier.

The moon walk.
Yes. Years ago

it was listed
in the hike book,

then it was gone.
Understood was this,

tundra walk discovered,
overused, taken off map,

unmaintained trail even now.
But it’s there, stunning,

7,800 elevation
between peak and glacier

with Forest Service
blessing, if not acknowledged.

Jim Bodeen
30 August 2014


He stepped through the wood fence
barricade erected by the Forest Service
after the storm came through
a decade ago. He entered
the erosion field where the White
did its damage in subsequent
winter storms, uprooting trees
criss-crossed in the acre-wide
and changing riverbed below the Mountain,
the thunder of big rocks
tumbling in fast moving
glacial water coming
from Emmons Glacier,
maybe a short mile above
where he sat now, back against
trunk of a dead fir, Old Man’s Beard
hanging like prayer flags.

He came here to this eroding bank
every September since things changed
more than twenty years ago.
He had prepared for this change
all his life, he saw. If it wasn’t
quite visible, it is what he believed,
back against this whitened trunk
holding him and the book of poems.

Jim Bodeen
28 August 2014


There was a storm,
a summer thunderstorm,
he was making root beer floats
in the kitchen
children surrounded

Adults had all disappeared
While children were swimming
adults circled on lawn chairs
talking about dreams
where had they gone he wondered

wanting straws for the hidden
vanilla at the bottom of the glasses
This was not his kitchen
not having spoons dislocated him.
Straws would draw this wonder from below

Jim Bodeen
26 August 2014

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