tier upon tier of Chinese purple houses,
interwoven with pink fairy lanterns, crowned
by umbels of evenly spaced Ithuriel's spears.
Where the embankment slopes steeply,
I climbed onto a rock by the rushing water.
I felt dizzy, leaning into poison oak. People
had ground acorns in a stone
near the confluence of those creeks.
I had never been there before, but I somehow knew
a path would lead me to another rock with mortars
above me on the ridge. I found the path
a few feet away below the branches
of a huge oak. I don’t know if
we can return to places and people we love,
but on that one path I was part
of tapestries forever changing,
the threads eternal, not bound by time.
A kaleidoscopic blue and pink
and purple, the penstemon flower
with the other village site,
and I lost myself in the shade
near the pounding stone.