No Place Like Home
By Stephen Cushman
My ocean's the one bad weather blows out to.
To face the other, waves all driven
by prevailing winds, I have to turn
my back on my family. May they forgive
this westward spree, my losing my head
to ravens that ride the thermals in circles,
to the shrub-covered bluffs of coastal scrub
and chaparral, to coons in the avocado trees;
may they not worry that I see signs
warning Great White Shark Area,
Rutting Elk May Be Aggressive,
and Hazardous Surf, or that one night two
quick earthquakes burped through the ground;
and may they repeat, when I return
slightly burned from the land of poppies,
all the lessons they ever taught me
about odination in the ordinary.
I'm leaving for points north and east. For the next few weeks this journal will contain trip photos and poetry. When I get back I might start the painstaking process of building filters and doing the kinds of compartmentalization that I have resisted, or I might keep posting poetry and photos. If you see some of my posts vanish for an hour, or if you see yourself vanish from my friends list for an hour, you might want to ask me what's going on before making assumptions and telling the entire world about them.
Anyone in New England with whom I have not yet swapped contact information: I will be able to get e-mail nearly every night of this trip. Please, if you want to get together, tell me how to reach you. You can reach me at my username @ livejournal.
At the foot of Devil's Tower.