past peak


Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park, Michigan

They told us, “Colors will be past peak,
you should have come last week.” No room
last week was busy
and it rained.

This week we packed
flannel-lined jeans and base layers,
hiking boots, a few t-shirts,
our heavy winter coats. After all
it is the UP
it could snow.

Gus kept an eye on us loading up the car.
In went his bag filled with bowls, treats
and food for a week. He was quick
to jump in the back seat

and out
when we arrived. Water!
A black lab streak to the big lake.
He shook sand free
beneath the unseasonably
warm sun.

We took short hikes on park trails, carefully
placing each footfall
roots and rocks, balancing
yesterday and tomorrow.

Like gold doubloons
wind-blown leaves buried
the forest floor. It was true. Colors
a bit past peak. Not unlike

Categories: poetry | 1 Comment

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One thought on “past peak

  1. Bittersweet.

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