Heading north out of Oak Harbor
traffic is squeezing from four lanes to two.
I give way to a logging truck.
Could have pushed and
beat him through the funnel.
But, true to self, I let him go.
Chunky, dark bark surrounds
damp, shiny rings of timber,
glowing with the orange of a perfect setting sun.
I have no clue what grows on Whidbey.
Maybe it came on the ferry from the peninsula.
Seems I should know my trees.
There’s the story of the day the Grandfather I never knew
didn’t come home from working in the woods,
resulting in seventy-five plus years of my Mother
floundering as a rootless soul.
I remember the family buzz
when Uncle Earl, his hard hat catching a glint of sun,
had his picture in National Geographic, The National Geographic,
reaching deep into the wedge of an imposing redwood.
And then that tale of Grandpa S. developing
the process that made Pres-to-Logs.
He did the work, company got the credit
and the money. Not sure they still make Presto-Logs.
After a few miles the truck
edges to the shoulder.
I pass, make momentary eye contact,
acknowledge the kindness, and continue my way home.