Mendocino Moon

— Harry Lafnear

By full moon light,
the wild summer grass on the mountainside
shines a snowy silver,
and low in the pass,
as the tinder-dry drift turns
to a shade of living bronze,
it shimmers still
with its phantom frost.
It tempers this late June heat
to race the switch of an unnamed road
where the dapple of asphalt
in the highbeam arcs
flashes like river stones
in the bend of an unnamed stream—
the stones tumbling forever
without interest in the tilt of days,
the spinning seasons,
but every instant choosing
to stand or turn, slip or stay,
and seeking the smallest sign
in the turbulence or some leaning
in the face of the moon
to determine whether its next fate
is heads or tails.
Where are we going? To find out. Though
wherever the coin of this moon lands,
we will be there to send it up again.

One thought on “Mendocino Moon

  1. Harry, once again, the ending of this poem elevates it beyond a mere meditation of the natural world. The poem patiently works it way through the mountain passes with clear imagery, as crisp as moonlight, and when the poems asks "Where are we going?" it comes at the perfect time. Indeed, it is something we have asked all our lives: Where are we all going on our journey, our wondrous life?

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