Hat, gloves, sweatshirt, pants,
at every campground we left some gear,
layer by layer, we shed our trip.
No need to restock spices and rice, WD40.
Across the Panhandle we lightened our loads.
Cycling past forests and woods,
I daydreamed: beach, ocean, school, home,
wondered how I would reenter my life.
Just as I’d start to make a plan, bushwhack
to a future me, I’d hear hunters’ shots
behind the pines, high-pitched squeals,
whelps echoing deep inside.