Good thing winter’s coming,
she said, noting my frayed
shorts and thin flip-flops,
late summer dust and smoke
settling in towering pines.
And in the high meadow heat
we listen to wood ants chewing
beneath burned bark.
To the south, forest blazes
throw gauze into the sky,
orange sun curling angrily
around a ghostly mountain.
We’ll need a new tent,
I said, brushing my hand
through fireweed and huckleberry,
distant rush of melting glaciers
echoing through the valley.