6 years of firestorms each felt still in the lung of memory such precise fears, anxieties, losses even as spring eases into our minds in tender sun green leaves on the oaks and myriad wild flowers in bud through verdant grasses on the window screen a few Mayflies live out their one, amazing day of life perhaps admiring the view of the lake from which they just emerged give our lives perspective One evacuation under our belt Room in our car for only 3 kitties Some clothes, important documents We drove to family in Humboldt 8 hours, of letting go and letting go Silence, breath, introspective We thought about leaving these summers and autumns of smokey air and apocalyptic sunsets, but instead we buy a backpack, our 'bug out’ bag our new lexicon, and laugh our evacuation plan written finally, on a crisp spring day in order of importance safety before danger, life before death the cry of the osprey half An hour before first light Catch and medicate the kitties Into the carrier, into the car Our‘bug out’ bag Call to a friend Who will start our phone tree Our game of tag The car always full of gas We live deeply each moment Ready to ‘bug out’ With no regret, no lament
Article by Mia Ruiz
Mia Ruiz is a first-generation, Peruvian-American poet who has lived in the beautifully biodiverse, geographically chaotic, complicated county of Lake since 2010. She lives with her beloved before Clear Lake (whose basin has been inhabited by Pomo peoples for at least 11,000 years) and before Mt. Konocti, an active volcano; as such she is a poet who now lives in geologic time.