Running at sea level in the June humidity

feels like your skin is burning off —
surrounded by boiling water,
which is actually the sweat
that has evaporated off your body
and is clinging still in the air,
nano-meters away,
because too many water molecules
are already occupying the space.
and the air threatens to drown your lungs,
so unused to an abundance of oxygen
pressing in on them and
disrupting their normal rhythm.
but it would be ridiculous to say
that you are out of breath.



yesterday I saw a line of young geese
trundle into the water after their mother
perfectly timed

like a set of synchronized swimmers
and I thought how nice it must be
to follow after with such certainty

because it seems the only times
i have gone anywhere with such assurance
was when I was walking out into the unknown

completely on my own
that inner sense of belonging from knowing
that this was my path alone


little satellite cycling round
hovering just out of plain sight
are you so unsure
you’ve been circling for years
only giving me flashes of who you are
why do you keep yourself away
only darting in to take a closer view
before veering away again
bill full
are you looking for one more angle to uncover
before believing that it’s safe to land
or will you continue to beat your wings
flapping furiously to hide the sound of your heart
whirring and clicking
like a strange bird among the stars


I sometimes forget that the foothills can be green.
When the sight for months on end
has only been variations of slate and brown,
dry sheaves of grass
and ever sinking, muddied ponds.

and it comes so late,
after false hopes
and late snow,
the back and forth of thawing
and refreezing under feet of snow.

but that first day
when I notice just barely perceptible
tones of olive and forest green
in the backdrop of this mountain scene,

it feels like a long-forgotten memory
has suddenly reappeared before my eyes,
reminding me
that something comes alive inside of me
with the romance of spring.

While Running Beside the South Platte River

Today I passed a man who seemed to be fishing
in an empty river bed.
The water had dropped down over centuries
and now, pooling just out of sight,
was barely trickling through the rocky dirt.

It’s been said that you are one to change
the desert into streams
and thirsty ground into springs of water.
But will you change this dead land between us
into a place verdant with the beauty of life.

When I look across this ocean of sand
and see nothing worth saving,
you tell me that generous is the man
who is merciful
and lends of himself.
And how widely yet your mercy flows,
coming to me like rain in the spring,
that waters the earth,
and showing me how to give of new life.

Come let us set things right,
you say,
and I remember that I have known
my sins to be like scarlet,
but yet you made me white as wool.
And maybe it is not so impossible
to stand on dry land,
rod in hand,
waiting for the flash of scales.