Moving From the Sea to the Mountains

by Maia Siegal, age 14
Moving From the Sea to the Mountains Maia Siegel is fourteen and lives in Roanoke, Virginia with her family and two cats. She has been published in The Claremont Review, and was highly commended for the Solstice Prize for Young Writers. When she’s not writing poetry she enjoys singing, acting, playing piano, and posting on her blog.

“I buy clean white sheets; / I do not want to feel sand on my ankles / when I sleep under Appalachian stars.”

  

I buy clean white sheets;

I do not want to feel sand on my ankles

when I sleep under Appalachian stars.

I get rid of the purple sea-wind torn furniture.

I buy sleek wood, brushed oak, instead. Ikea.

I research down duvets, stuffed with the same feathers

as the birds that will circle

my future house

on a hill.

For some reason, that is comforting.

 

I want nothing

to do with the sea. I

want mountains that change shape

with every Spring rain pour

and cars that swerve around

curves of red clay dirt. I want heavy mountain breathing

and green eager ticks and sap bleeding

from the trees.

 

No.

I want nothing

to do with

the mountains. I

want waves that inch like

breaths and

collapse like lungs.

I want sand that sticks to skin

and lifeguard towers that stand

like egrets. I want beach weddings

ruined by the tide and feet tans that depend

on what shoes you were willing

to ruin.

 

The real truth,

yes,

the real

truth,

is that I spend

not much time

at either. Instead,

I lie

in my manufactured

cocoon of plaster

protection, with its

waterlogged porch and square lots

of yellow grass,

sorting nature’s phenomenons

into like and dislike piles.

 

1 Comment

  • Ellyn Bache says:

    What a remarkable poem from such a young, talented poet — from a reader who has moved from the sea to the mountains (and really loves only the sea). Looking forward to reading much more.

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