Jagged mountains penetrate gray skies And The Egg and I Road winds through fields peppered with ruined barns and grazing cattle Gravel paths grind underfoot, Eagles roost in the evergreens high above. Salty sea air hangs over a rocky shore; gulls peck at decomposing crabs. Huge aquatic tubers dry under a hot sun And I can see the inquisitive head of a harbor seal in the sound. When I walk on the beach, I hop from boulder to boulder And imagine all the places where fairies could dwell. Doe and their spotted babies wander through suburban yards And human residents learned long ago to put chicken wire around their vegetables. You have to be careful when driving in the woods at night; They might leap out into the road. Old sailors eat clam chowder at Sea-Jay’s family diner – half of it ends up in their scraggly beards. Dogs-A-Foot on Water street serves the best sausages you’ll ever have. I have too much pride to say I’m from the Seattle area, Because I’ve been to Seattle once, for three hours After coming from the airport. I’m from a trailer park in Spokane, I’m from an old little house on a hill in the woods. I am the deer and the trees and the rocks and the fish and the gulls and the moss and the crows and the clam chowder and it’s been a very long time since I’ve been home.
Artist Statement: I wrote this poem about growing up in western Washington. While I was born here in Ann Arbor and came to live here permanently at six years old, my formative years were spent in the Pacific Northwest. I often struggle with a sense of belonging. "am I from Michigan or Washington?" I ask myself. but I know the answer is both. in this piece, I explore that latter half of myself.