as dark, rain-heavy clouds dissipated,
anemic rays of sodden sunlight
pierced the cedar forest, beckoned
five-point bucks, invited stately bald eagles
to take flight, soar, seek out schools
of chinook salmon spawning up stream
avoiding fish nets, evading natural predators.
Fork-lighting juggernauts followed
by rolling thunder, winds, and rain
faded into my memory’s guarded caverns;
light breezes shook rare remnants of Gaia’s
tears from brush maple leaves, shivering
conifer boughs, lofty Foxglove blossoms,
while we warbled like gregarious starlings
chirping omens, emerging from safe bastions.