“For the Boy Who Was Dodger Point Lookout Fifteen Years Ago”

In this poem, Gary Snyder is reminiscing about a backpacking trip he took with his first wife through the Olympic Mountains of Washington State. A young fire ranger, noticing the blue smoke from their campfire, hiked two miles down from his lookout to meet them.

OlympicsThe thin blue smoke of our campfire

down in the grassy, flowery

heather meadow

two miles from your perch.

The snowmelt pond, and Alison,

half-stooped bathing like

Swan Maiden, lovely naked,

ringed with Alpine fir and

gleaming snowy peaks. We

had come miles without trails,

you had been long alone.

We talked for half an hour up

there above the foaming creeks

and forest valleys, in our

world of snow and flowers.

I don’t know where she is now;

I never asked your name.

In this burning, muddy, lying,

blood-drenched world

that quiet meeting in the mountains

cool and gentle as the muzzles of

three elk, helps keep me sane.



Filed under Poem

2 responses to ““For the Boy Who Was Dodger Point Lookout Fifteen Years Ago”

  1. Bill Stuart

    AH Bruce a nice poem to take us away from this
    Moslem crazed world.

  2. The last three lines have resonated since I first read this poem 48 years ago.

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