amongst ferns

9something a.m. gina
tells me shiz went on
a walk to the waffle cart
and is bringing something
sweet/fruity back for me
and soon we’re peeling back
the foil and wax paper
revealing cream and strawberries
tucked between warm waffle squares
in this sauna-sweat-heat
deep lung breaths
cycling in/out audible
unsure of what but something
is moving through me

steam rising from
pinked skin while i
bench-lounge under a
veiled and shining sky

faith and i amongst
ferns bursting with life-full green
following the wildwood trail where i
say something about the difference
between figuring it out

and having it all figured out
and i thank her for how she
calls some people’s children
their legacies
which explains some of the searching


taking it season by season she observes
i appreciate that


summer calling
what lauren and her friends do
ladyhugs and later in the kitchen
i ask summer

if it’s ok to give her a ladyhug
jasper and i reunioning
in a fog-filled street
a hug for all the time and space
that has passed


because it wouldn’t be portland
without a go-around
we share our names
and a rose from our day


fallow i say and fruitful
to renee, identifying
the two work seasons
of a poet


doubled over on the
fold-out chair in the corner
with gutsplitting laughter
while renee moves to and away
from applause in her
first round of affirmation
(a game that will
always make me think of
tomcat and the flyswatters
on the screened-in front porch)


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