Poetry: The Man to See

he calls my daughter Annie Oakley
placing a BB gun in her small hands
“you got this, girllll” he croons
channeling his inner John Wayne

bravery shines in her blue eyes
as the line of empty cans fall
he tells her she can do anything

seeing man
the man to see

busy hands covered in silver rings
he builds a house in the backyard
a place for his daughter to play
he hangs a horseshoe over the door

I grow up within the wooden walls
dancing with my best friend
knowing he would protect us

tinker man
the man to see

you don’t leave his house
without a pocketful of treasure
a genuine rock from Mars
jewels and books and toys

each item has a tall tale
he’ll tell you if you listen
with a joke and a wink

storyteller man
the man to see

he taught me to fish at 10
with wrinkled moving hands
years later he taught my son
the same casting tricks

he loved my cooked beans
and always made me smile
I’ll forever be one of Earl’s girls

gentle man
the man to see

This poem is a tribute to my childhood best friend’s father who passed recently at 92. I was only a small part of his long life, but he left a big impact on me and my children.

We love you, Earl.

Photography: Oregon Mountains

“What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing? – it’s the too-huge world vaulting us, and it’s good-bye. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”
-Jack Kerouac, On the Road

I’ve shared many photos the last few weeks of my trip to Oregon but this final collection is the most special to me.

My grandmother died of Covid at the start of the pandemic. Although it took us several years, we were finally able to reunite her with her husband in a lush field of tall grasses on top of a beautiful Oregon mountain. The sun shone brightly and butterflies chased the truck as we left. It feels wonderful to know she’s where she wants to be and at peace.

Here are a few of the images from that day. I hope you enjoy them.

Covered bridge
Moss and cobwebs
Bear grass
My grandmother’s marker
This leather marker was placed when my grandpa passed and the tree has grown around it.
Butterfly on the Columbia Tiger Lily
My beautiful momma

What to see more?