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Home / Issue 33 / THIS MOUNTAIN


By Jeff Fearnside

In the shadowed chill and insect flitting

of this Oregon morning

I am stung

by my inadequacies.

I am not William Stafford.

My pen stutters,

my feet shuffle,

my metaphors turn red

and turn away.


Unconsoled by who I am

I can only reconcile myself

with where I’m at.


It is good to see

green nettles and orange-yellow columbine,

fruiting salmonberry and crimson-seeded maples

with my own eyes,

to breathe and send

oxygen to limbs and organs

with my own blood. The words

to describe these don’t matter.

I sense all this

in my body

and that is enough.

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