SageGreenJournal.org voices out of the West, mostly poetry, personal to planetary...
Poet, photographer, inveterate angler, and Senior Lecturer in the English Department at Fort Lewis College in Durango. Steve's books include: On Seeing Nature, Lime Creek Odyssey, Streamside Reflections, The Nature of Fly Fishing, Notes from the San Juans and San Juan River Chronicle.
I have fished famous water, steelhead Valhalla
flown far north to small-town fogged-in interior B.C.
—turned around, sent back to Vancouver to try to land
again the next day four-wheeled hours to the boat to float
a wilderness river to wake early and spend days arms aching
casting my feathered hopes over distant water filled
with sea-run behemoths. I have
shaken with adrenaline as world-record steelies tumbled and raced
water spraying when they shook my reel screaming, my heart racing
surrounded by impossibly tall spruce, grizzlies lurking nearby
held on until they were either lost or landed and released
still, I say
give me my home stream, the creek
that tumbles tiny from tundra to ponderosa in twelve falling miles,
through miniature canyons, over and past small falls
give me a day on home water filled with tiny gems
trout that weigh ounces not pounds
—cutthroat and rainbow whose mottled backs match
a bottom of green black maroon white pebbles
and fist-sized cobbles of gray and pepper granite
where my son once crawled in the aspen wood
as I fished, where my wife wanted to be one last time between
hospital stays before death
give me home, and I will seize it
without wanderlust, or regret
SageGreenJournal.org is a non-commercial project to share a poetic vision of the land we love.
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