by Raúl Sánchez

I live in a place above the lake
in the middle of two mountain ranges
the Cascades to the East the Olympics to the West
Seattle flanked by Elliott Bay and Lake Union

Tourists favorite landmark
and Chief Seattle’s fountain
Space needle pointing to the blue sky
the historic Pike Place Market
where flying fish are found.

Pleasure to walk the narrow alleys
gold diggers and sailors once walked
on the way to their ships to Alaska

Driving across draw bridges
we reach the rocky beaches
before the tall sails sail through

Short ferry ride takes me to
the San Juan Islands
Vashon, Bainbridge, Orcas, Lopez
where on a clear day
the majesty of Mount Rainier
stands closer to the heavens

pristine rivers and streams
where salmon swims
and the Swinomish natives
catch them at opening season
to cook them on cedar wooden planks

offering to the land
the wind, the sun, the rain
Oh, the rain!
natural cleanser that washes away
the grim and grime of the streets
and sidewalks

The Pacific Northwest
where the seasons shine and hide
in the winter months.
Where rain falls, oh blessed rain.
Green mountain trails, tall firs, pine and cedar
Snow mountain peaks jagged edges
at the brake of sun,
white powder clouds canvas
where birds fly south to warmer places.
On rainy days I clean the moss off my shoes
fling the slugs off my porch!

I live in a place surrounded by verdant forests
permeated by fresh air
and quiet streams
while we walk the hidden trails
in our old shoes.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I tried to gather images of the place I live, the natural beauty, the weather, natural resources, tourist attractions, and other known and unknown highlights about the place. Although we have a vast mix of ethnic diversities, I did not include that topic since I just wanted to expose the outside rather than the inside and its people.

IMAGE: “Emerald City” by Benjamin Yeager. Prints available at

Open Books 2012

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Raúl Sánchez‘s recent work has appeared in the 2014 Jack Straw Writers Anthology, the Raven Chronicles, Clover, Ghost Town Poetry, Randomly Accessed Poetics, Redmond Association of Spokenword Poetry, Standing Still, Lowriting, The Smoking Poet, Snow Monkey, La Bloga, and other online and print journals.