North Oregon Coast
On this ravine edge—Sword fern,
deer fern, huckleberry. Red flowering currant.
And now a dove’s tender call—
Ravine. The earth opened—
thirty years rustle, cross-hatched below.
Across this chasm— a far-side porch
where my now dead father on
his 70th birthday rallied his youth,
aired his delight: an assembly of relatives—
all of us forever at that table. Family,
he never wavered.
The old deer trail we followed
now a sea of salal, tangled blackberries, a mash of ivy.
I look down from the far side of 70 into
the holly and listen—
a bold bit of a bird chitters
a brief frenzy of joy. Late afternoon sun
seeps into pines and firs.
On the Ridge
You know that place between sleep and awake? That place where you still remember dreaming?… Peter Pan
I follow my mother past
the white belly of the Sherwood Point Lighthouse
hiking the Idlewild ridge. Below us Lake Michigan’s
arriving waves hustle
over the Coast Guard’s wide concrete pier. We
head into the woods, treading on softened
needles—pine and cedar.
In a clearing—an enormous
wide-porched summer home. Red awnings spring
from its grey-shingled facade. Red too, a wooden
two-person glider alone in the yard.
It is an early Wisconsin
spring morning and the home is vacant. My
long dead mother says Let’s sit for awhile.
The grey-shingled house watches as we climb
into the red glider. In my
dream we rock in unison. My mother wonders
aloud, What family lives in this grand house,
hidden from the worries of the world?
No one, I tell her,
Kelly Sievers lives in Portland, Oregon and is delighted two poems focusing on family memories are published here. Her writing began focused on family and later moved to poems and stories from her nursing career and her interest in the visual arts. (Ekphrastic poem in Rockvale Review) She has published in numerous journals and anthologies. Most recent anthology: Rumors, Secrets and Lies, October, 2022. Most recent Journals: The North Coast Squid; Valley Voices; Plume.