Today I walked the road from end to end.
If you want to know, yes, I looked
for bears. My whole adult life I’ve looked.
Before sex, there was not a bear. And
so on. While I walked, planes came through
the valley, two together, antique, I think.
My thoughts went to air show.
Crop duster. Forest fire. First flight.
I don’t know where you are.
So now I’ll say I hated and loved the time
the young barista gave you your receipt
with her number on the back. I was
right there, like another customer,
a book bag. Just this morning,
the man up the road told me
a story: one evening he sat alone
in the yard with his book and sensed
in the quiet a presence—what he took
to be his wife sneaking up. He waited.
Finally he turned to see sleeping on the grass
behind his chair a large bear. I could
have wept. Tonight the roar coming on
is one plane, nothing in chase or warning
or relief, nothing but the late sun
and everything’s invitation to face it.