Serpent Box

A tiny spore emerges from the leaf tip, unfurling, a tuft of amber down, it clings for a moment and it shudders in the ocean wind. And then it’s gone. It rises and swirls in an updraft, and above the cliff side it joins other gossamers, newly loosened and likewise air born in this rite of October here above the Headlands in Marin.

I, too, am newly loosened and freshly born. I am unfurled, the husk of some previous version of myself still crackles at my feet. I am 49, but no age offers safety or respite from these ever-hatching incarnations, these rebirths, these growth-spurts triggered by flame. I am just another pinecone waiting for the forest to burn. And here I wander. Among the cypress trees and catacombs, where the men, of what is now called the greatest generation, crouched and crawled, as they waited for an invasion that…

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