the sacredest

the usps person on the phone
and how her sneeze
brings us a small human moment
(she apologizes and says
she’s coming down with a cold and
i tell her i hope you feel better soon)
the juniper i find
in a swath of undeveloped land
at the edge of campus
and before the edge of the sports field
next to which i sit
in the reddish sand scattered with stones
just so i can see the mountains
as i read


something about orienting the map
in the book that is talking about here
and four as the sacredest number
and how mountains in the cardinal directions
declare the boundaries of where the earth
has been cooked to done-ness,
ready for humans to inhabit it
but beyond is the great undone wild
and that’s where we live

and also there’s something
about orienting the mountains on the map
to the mountains i see to the east
something about aligning my internal compass
(now, always knowing south)
is like lining up a treasure key
with it’s mechanism
and turning it to unlock
anthropocene liz says
as jamie pours slow tea
green tea (gyokuro)
into the small and thin ceramic cups
that we pass around the circle
and there is something about the aroma
and the flavor
familiar and not,
with hint of spinach,
not bitter – but something like it,
and not sweet, but something like that too

the tea made with water
traced back through the tap:
treated at canyon road treatment plant direct diversion facility
after being gathered from america’s most endangered river
(the santa fe river),
the dwindling rio grande and wells
that draw from the tesuque formation
(aquifer downstream
from the los alamos national laboratory
[one of two sites in the u.s. for the development
of nuclear weapons]
which means there is radiation, a small bit,
in this water
and how some folks estimated the time it would take
the radiation to leech into the water source
to be around 1,000 years
but it only took 60)
72 microseasons in japan
jamie says naming the example of
the 5 days of a certain flower blooming

the corn muffins that jessica bakes
and carries to us on two small plates
on top of which we drizzle
the sorghum


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