Photo by Jeanie Greensfelder

After the atmospheric river soaks
the Central Coast, I picture the ocean
crashing over the jetty at Morro Rock.
Once the roads clear, though wind
and rain bluster, I drive to watch and join
the crowd of weather voyeurs—some dare to climb
the jetty, others take photos from a safe distance,
and some surf below on incoming breakers.

I ponder my longing to see this.
Years ago, a man saw a bear asleep
in an avocado tree by a nearby creek. I have
“see-a-bear envy.” I’m not sure where
that creek was, but daily check my local
creek’s sycamore for bears.

Now I ooh and ah with the audience as if
we are at a sporting event. The waves rock
and build momentum, then erupt like foam
clouds before they cave and crash.
We root for them to defy gravity
and let us be the ones who see it.

:: Jeanie Greensfelder

By Jeanie Greensfelder

Jeanie Greensfelder served as the San Luis Obispo County poet laureate during 2017 and 2018. Her poems have been published at American Life in Poetry, Writer’s Almanac, and Poetry Foundation’s Poem of the Day; in the anthologies Paris, Etc. and Pushing the Envelope: Epistolary Poems; and in the journals Miramar, Thema, Askew, Persimmon Tree, and others. Her books include "Biting the Apple," "Marriage and Other Leaps of Faith," and "I Got What I Came For."