Driving Highway 101


        "Quilters never stop"
        --Karen Bodeen

Mapled blueberries
Corn Flakes invite the bell to sound
Bring yesterday home

OK last night tired
Karen setting out
Breathing so much joy

None of this planned
Holding these stones in my hands
come up from below

Every day's first poem
Workshop in wonder, O God
Warming for the now

The work before me
What I asked God for
Sitting with Poems

Jim Bodeen
15 Sept 2016
Camp Redwood


Karen in paisley dress, in sunshine
and wind, feet in sand, barefoot.
We were here 16 years ago this January
reading poems with Nye Beach writers.
"The Elizabeth Inn," Karen says,
"We could hear the surf from our room."
I remember, the morning of that reading,
it was dark. The inauguration
of George W. Bush. All those men
in long, black coats. Carrying those
images into the reading of poems,
it's one of my seminal images.

The morning after the reading
we walked the beach, and found
those large black stones, surf
swirling around them
as we searched for spots to stand on.
We took photographs of each other
looking out to sea, later framing them
in the collage frame from my sister.

We walk back again today,
retracing our story, stopping
at the Nye Beach Viet Nam Veteran's Memorial.
We read the poem, see ourselves
mirrored in the black stone
as we did then, as we saw ourselves
in the stone in Washington. It's so beautiful
what they did, mirroring.

I fix tacos in the mothership
surrounded and cutting limes
without knowing where I am.

Karen says, "I'm going to ask a favor,"
startling me, "What?"
"Wipe the mice poop from the toilet paper door."

Jim Bodeen
14 September 2016


Karen steps out of truck
takes photos of elderly couple
reading Tsunami sign
at Lincoln City. A 9+ quake
off shore fault system--
Cascadia Subductdion Zone
from Northern California to British Columbia.
A wave of 50 feet.
I'm thinking about Native villages
wiped out as Karen gets back
in the cab. "I took a picture of you
photographing that elderly couple,"
I say to her. "Yes, that elderly couple,
they're our age, or younger."

Jim Bodeen
13 September 2016       

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