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issue 4


a poem by
Amorak Huey
> bio

The Trees Beside Lake Michigan

My father and I walk the dune ridge trail
at Kirk Park in Ottawa County
in mid-October, leaves on fire
around us. We talk of trees
and their names, the importance of knowing
the names of things - the difference
between sugar and red
maple, how white pine has five needles,
that the acorn I've picked up fell
from a northern red oak. He tells
a story I've heard: Thirty-one years ago,
this same season,
they walked a trail
much like this in a park south
on this same shore. She carried me,
seven months inside her,
and their trail had a fork. He doesn't
tell me the end of the story,
doesn't need to. We go on
talking about trees. At its end,
the trail spills us onto to the beach.
The waves are limp,
the water clear enough to see
the bottom ten yards out.
I skip the acorn toward Illinois
watch it bounce once, twice toward the sun
before sinking
into the uncertain water.

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