Head of the Metolius
It gushes out of a little cave in Black Butte
but originates in the Cascades,
a hundred miles away.
Cold! Too cold to stand in.
And clear. Right out of the ground.
And these old man poems–
where do they come from,
after so much dark and silence?
They burble out free, easy,
fresh and clear to me.
Sixty-odd years of tears & sweat
roiling in the caverns of my mind,
into hidden caves and crevices.
Chilling there. And flowing out
as I tilt and head downhill,
hitting the light, sparkling there.
Brad Shurmantine (bradshurmantine.com) lives in Napa, Ca., where he writes, reads, tends three gardens (sand, water, vegetable), takes care of chickens, cats, and bees, and works on that husband thing. He backpacks in the Sierras and travels when he can, and has a serious passion for George Eliot.