A man gives up early in the summer,
too warm for wine, too hot for evening
poetry to endure, before darkness closes
the oven doors to bake in the black.
The Kings River calls, trout singing
from the riffles, asking why, when
trails of natives and early settlers rise
into the mountains, spread like webs
into the pine cabins and camps
beside the mantra of running water
through the night. I go early to bed
to get there in my dreams.