we do what we need to do – May 14


Weathered hands, mid calf deep in

the water. Placerville, panning, keening

at stream silt edges for a glimpse of gold.

A flake, a niggly pebble that might show

a flash. Day after day, all day, screening

through ones fingers for that glimpse.


The dog’s pebbles screen through my

fingers, a whole tub full, a few grains

of salmon flavoring adhering to me

as I pan for a staple or two. Some

fell in when the bag split, and it

is the flash of dull silver that I seek.


Idiot work, all day or morning work,

we do what we need to do to find

what we need to find for the sake of

what matters to us. Nothing is above

or beneath honor. We do what we need

to do, and gladly.




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