When a Mountain Comes Alive Again
for my father, Peter Hemp
When a mountain disappears, the contour
of its once mighty flank and summit
stays in your mind’s eye, just as those
with missing limbs claim to feel
pain and heat in their absent hands and feet.
When a mountain turns to ash,
molten rock and fire have made it so.
A life well-lived – marked by Douglas firs
and trails that tell a thousand tales—ends
in a blast where present meets the past.
But when a mountain comes alive again,
and whispers steam from its long-breathless
mouth, a strange sensation comes over you.
Seismic rumblings shiver the skin.
A roiling hope takes over from within.