Wilson River: First Outing after Quadruple Bypass
Along the upper reaches, fog hangs thick
against basalt cliffs––steep mountainsides,
where wisps slide through fir tops.
Mist coalesces on pine needles––
drops reflecting sky,
shining as if they had their own light.
Walking this path with my wife,
we pass by bright green carpets
of moss and bracken.
All this color sloshed higher
than a full rack of antlers,
a flood of lichen.
Stopping at the meadow’s edge,
we sight the tallest fir,
Bark still bares the scar
the bolt traveled, as does my chest
from the heart surgeon’s scalpel.
Sometimes, eagles perch here––
survey the fast curving ribbon
running high from snowmelt.
Having survived off the winterkill of elk,
it is nearly time for them to feast on spring run salmon,
add more sticks to the nest started last year.
Mark Thalman is the author of Catching the Limit (Fairweather Books, 2009), and he is the Editor of poetry.us.com. His work has been widely published for almost four decades.