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California Live Oak

Quercus agrifolia

Phantom Limbs.jpg


"Phantom Limbs"

96 inches x 164 inches

Gouache on paper, 2020


A Likeness

(Quercus agrifolia)


Live oaks and elephants, the gray

curled skin, hard-shifting shanks

and knees.  These trees


never forget what they take

from earth, what they give back.

Birds land on their heads all day


and bask in sky till fog

rolls in.  Then thick feet lumber

and stand while darkness falls,


trunks lifted up to the moon.


—from Say This Prayer into the Past (Cascade Books, 2013)

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