Youth on Age
A poem by Laura Da'
Lockets of licorice ferns
throw piked green backflips
into the mulch of second growth
western red cedar. The sun opens
the cellar doors to ground nests
and the trail buzzes with bees
and their urgent enticement
to forward motion. School emails
promise a multilayered approach
to safety with single point of entry,
thick rubber door jams, emotional
support staff specialists.
Patches of dicentra formosa
open their mauve aortas
to spit green seeds into
the moss. During quarterly
lockdown drills, it is someone's job
to run through the halls, banging
on doors and begging to be let in.
The creek banks are carpeted
with piggybacked youth-on-age
rhizomes. Tender plants with slim,
hairy legs and rough green palms.
Each mother leaf