Nature is out of plumb.
Sere spring shrinks wetlands,
shrivels garden, initiative, imagination.
Morning walks bring us eye-to-eye
with thirsty deer, frazzled raccoons,
local evidence of increased global warming.
Compulsory water rationing is imposed.
Along Ocean Avenue, empty planter boxes,
dying pines, desiccated maples.
Snowless Sierras, failing wells--
Deep inside Pacheco Pass,
San Luis reservoir nearly depleted.
Stressed cypress topple onto trails.
Goliaths so enfeebled by drought,
wind and gravity shove them off-kilter.
Skewed season, barren sky, stunning sun
accelerate freak summer symptoms.
Wizened limbs burst with premature blooms.
At Carmel River Lagoon
"my legs splashing over the edge of darkness, my heart on fire." ~ Mary Oliver
Tethered to habit and a small dog,
I sprint above crumpled beach,
greet morning walkers, floating otters,
egrets wading through grass.
Below me, incensed ocean
slams tumbling wave spume
against sculpted cove,
bronzed, glowing sand.
Among ancient cypress,
sleek blackbirds swivel beady eyes,
reconnoiter sodden picnic scraps,
squawk in gossiping covens.
Beneath burning horizon,
terns flutter, pierce elusive anchovies
within steaming, sheltered lagoon.
Gratitude burgeons; poetry captures.
Red Hot Pokers & Rocks
Whales spout just off rocky shore,
spew lacy umbrellas against cloudless horizon.
Winding trail along worn adobe bluff retains
shrinking puddles from scant, recent rainfall.
Strange spring bludgeons the coast with unseasonal hot flash,
pushes puzzled fruit trees into full blossom.
The ocean warms; fish migrate to cooler depths.
Baby harbor seals sicken, die by the hundreds.
Between boulders and sea, red hot pokers pulse,
Planet Earth’s flashing emergency lights.
Jennifer Lagier has published nine books of poetry as well as in a variety of literary magazines. Her latest book, Camille Vérité, was just published by FutureCycle Press and is available on Amazon.com. She taught with California Poets in the Schools and is now a retired college librarian/instructor, member of the Italian American Writers Association, co-edits the Homestead Review, maintains web sites for Homestead Review, Monterey Poetry Review, Ping Pong Literary Journal and misfitmagazine.com. She also helps coordinate monthly Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Visit her website at: http://jlagier.net