Ode to Mt. Philo

by Major Jackson

After avocadocolored inclines, after dawdling ascents
over fern & foliage, after long trillium gazes and careful steppings
over outcrops of rocks which if not careful could
trip to foil, after delicate trail talk of marriages and births,
dates, and quarrels squashed, the tentative pace
of the new inlaw, the surefootedness of the longago loved,
after stopoffs to catch breath, a swig and quaff, to take this much
in, midway up journey, this resting place to further
peaks and crests, after foothold and climb, after storm’s last
sculpture of fallen trees, You, summit of my life, philosophy
of sky, You, embezzler of breaths from big and small mouths,
so that all whisper your spreadout tabernacle, a new religion,
You ritual burst of mountain light and sparkling lake
for which we lineup taking our turns in spawns of clicks
and screens: panorama of foothills like green coats thrown
open, clouds, if only we could reach & cup into our hands,
and below, a stitched patchwork of land: limepastured
like flattened squares of kale. We look. We marvel at how far
we traveled through emerald, glitter, and beam.