The Joy of a Peppered Pickle
a modified Peppered Pickle
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    Free Verse Poetry Contest Contest Winner 
 Category:  Romance Poetry
  Posted: August 24, 2018      Views: 194

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 ABOUT
JACQUELINE O. 
Nurse and wife by day, writing addict by night. Creation is both my passion and my drug, fueled by daily life and the experiences that have changed me. Cheers!

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Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
A retelling of our first date.
"Desert High" by Jacqueline O.
We're sitting on a stone wall,
man-made, but shaped by
a lifetime's worth
of wind and the sun that never
lets go.
The scent of the baked earth is pungent as we lick salt
off the corners of our mouths, but I don't mind as I
switch positions,
the rock underneath me like sandpaper on my fingertips as I move.
Our throne is cold, chipped and broken in places that hold
pockets of stone that are even cooler than that of the surface,
but the desert air is warm
where it crawls up
the valley to meet the stiff mountain wind that
sulks around our perch.
I look forward: there's maybe
six feet of
rock and gritty dirt in front of us
before the mountain drops off,
and to be so near
to catastrophe, and yet safe,
is such a thrill.
He's beside me, gaze pointed the same direction as mine,
our hands
locked together against the wind,
and it's quiet.
The whole valley is before us,
spread out like a star-lit sky full of
movement and color and light,
bowl-shaped and round like the heavens
and yet
with fading boundaries to show where the buildings taper off
and the Desert Proper begins.
It's beautiful.
The night, the air, and the city with
a thousand stars for light,
and we are at peace.
We're wrapped in the quiet,
drinking in the scene
that the lift of the mountain provides,
and when he looks over and smiles,
I realize
it's the perfect desert high.
Free Verse Poetry Contest
Contest Winner

Author Notes
My husband is a clever man. For our first date, he waited until dusk, drove me up into the mountains, (holding my hand around every hairpin curve, mind you) and then parked at the summit with a wild grin on his face.

At the peak of the California summer, it was sweltering in the valley. But in the cool netherworld of the sharp peaks around his home, the air was cool and fresh. I had never been on a desert mountain before, and the experience was unforgettable. Our first date. Our first kiss. The first glimpse of our future. As an unabridged account of this fleeting moment in our history, this poem is dear to my heart. Enjoy!
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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