Trail Equations

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Elan Mudrow

Portlandia Portlandia

Equation 1

At the trailhead

The snow dampens my spirit

Melting upon contact, on

My shivering hand, longing

To shut myself up inside a bubble

To drive back to wine and heat

Quietude among city streets

Under blankets of roofs

Lawns cured to perfection

Equation 2

There is a woman in the parking lot

She stands near the trailhead

Backpack overstuffed, hitchhiking

As if she expected the snowfall to be

Warmer, not quite as cold

As these mountains produce.

In her eyes is a search

For unknown calmness

Equation 3

I’ve seen her pace before

A deer running from a fire

An escape, a desire, a plan

Anywhere is better than

Where she is from

This longing, I recognize

The colliding equations of

Guessing when to leave

And knowing when to stay

Equation 4

The clouds have come down

From the sky to embrace me

There is something inside…

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