Visiting Again - Patricia Peterson

Sniff that Spring-like dampness:
A soupcon of nutmeg, a touch
Of lemony surprise
it floats so leisurely at first
Quietly white, abundantly present
Across the road past the poplars
Past the woodlot
To the wooden bridge
The forest welcomes white,
Reaches with its grey-black limbs

I long to push through drifts.

Just yesterday it was a bare bones time
Between the autumn leaves
And winter snow, the woods exposed.
But now the trees are intimate again
White flesh elaborates each limb.
My legs push forward
To the sound of my own breath
The upper branches of the beech
So lightly chattering.
My pines are corpulent.
And frame the house
The metal roof that overhangs the whole,
Between the fieldstone wall, fern wood,
And boggy land behind
The touch, the weight, the soft
Compulsion of this place

All as it was, but different

Patricia Peterson has a very small cabin in Vermont where she is an honorary member of the Civilian Conservation Corps. She has worked as an editor and teacher and is now living in Chicago and Somerville, MA., neither of which provides the opportunity to fly fish. Until recently she has been content to keep her poems to herself, but the pandemic has recommended other actions. It has been a quiet time, most of it spent along Lake Michigan hiking and biking and staying inside. The return to a more active life is a relief. She recently went rafting in Costa Rica.