in a hollow on a mountain.
The hollow does not allow him to view
the broad river valley below.
Most people climb mountains
to view far away things.
Paul hikes the mountain
for a closer look
at the trees and wildflowers
and rock that extends deep into the earth.
Some days he presses his face
into ponderosa pine trunks
to view the variations in bark
and catch a whiff of vanilla.
Other days he sits on a rock outcropping
in a high meadow where pikas live
and watches them become accustom
to his quiet sitting.
They grace him with their presence
and rodent antics.
This is his paradise.
His garden of eden.
He imagines God’s forbidden fruit
described as a pine cone.
copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney