Michael Spring

leaving Hell's Canyon

when we closed the root cellar door
we knew we wouldn't be back

we left the yams, beets, and greens
obscured in the dark

and an assortment of fruits
and pickled vegetables
visceral in glass jars

you said the sod roof
will eventually break through
and the root cellar will rot
hidden in thickets of chaparral

a perfect den for rabbit or snake

when we walked away
the scent of sage and juniper
sweetened the air

our hands held emptiness
like an amulet

and the dust
no matter how lightly we stepped
rose like smoke from the path

Michael Spring is the author of three poetry collections: blue crow (2003), Mudsong (2005), and Root of Lightning (2011). His poems have appeared in numerous publications, including The Atlanta Review, DMQ Review, The Dublin Quarterly, Gavea-Brown, The Midwest Quarterly, NEO, and The Oregonian. Michael lives in O'Brien, Oregon. He is currently a natural builder, a martial art instructor, and a poetry editor for The Pedestal Magazine.



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