-for Kelly & Robert
After crossing over the flooded stream
and into barren fire road,
after walking through the overgrown shrub
and past coyote scat,
their backpacks crowding their sweaty backs
and holding a weight
that is not unlike a past
that every person carries with them,
they stop at a crest.
Take a breath.
They look out onto the old ocean
and the whole world is before them,
as close as the coarse brush
that scratches their cuffs
and as far as the hazy line that binds
the sea to the sky.
The sun sutures this certain edge
and yes, here is where they will
put down their packs,
pitch their tent,
the narrow poles tendering
the ground in a soft way.
Here they will strike a fire with the branches
they have gathered. Warm the kettle.
Lean into each other like the tinder
they have built into a little shack.
Burn inside this space.
It’s always been this simple: