Bullfrogs and San Juan Island, 2 poems by Brooke Dwojak Lehmann


Always in discord, they are
summer’s yellow-throated singers,

so deep in distress, I cannot tell
if the voice is mine or theirs

cannot even tell if it is fright
or sorrow, the pained thrum

which gives to a humid night
echoes in the eardrum,

a reverb as haunting as
an owl or one’s racing heart,

which lingers when they sleep
during the panting heat of day

while the moon seeps silent
under the bright horizon

what remains is close to sweat
and skin, a dizzy reminder

of hidden pasts, sounds
of the South and my fears.

cloudy moonrise over deep blue swamp
Elk Island by Public Domain. CC license.

San Juan Island

We decide to follow the people
with the big-ass cameras and boots.

They at least look prepared.
Something, we are not.

We scurry down a rocky ledge.
Me, in jelly shoes. You, in flip-flops.

I carry the disappointment
from yesterday’s guaranteed sighting tour.

You pocket your hopeful adventure
which might cause us to sleep under the stars.

After a week, I’ve given up on the whales.
I’m not optimistic much these days—

A broken body with dreams that fell
off this high cliff we are hiking,

so, I’ve settled for seeing seagulls
and summer’s speckled fawn.

Though, we nervously wait, check our phones
to make sure we can return the “go-car” on time,

we watch the tiny boats below circle,
as the apricot sun glistens over the water,

and I hear a breath, so deep and so expansive,
that somehow it is enough today,

to fill the gap of it all.

Brooke Dwojak Lehmann
Brooke Dwojak Lehmann is a poet currently living in Seattle. She also enjoys fashion modeling, restorative yoga, and nature walks with her husband, Justin, and poodle, Linus. Find out more about her work at brookelehmann.com.

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