sna poems #69: kettle moraine oak opening

kettle moraine oak opening is very much what it sounds like, though there’s plenty of oak woods too. another sna in the interlobate moraine area between two fingers of the last glaciation (the lake michigan lobe and green bay lobe), the rolling and tumbling topography between steep ridges and kettle holes is always a delight to meander thru. maintaining the oak opening and small prairies on the knobs takes some doing, and we visited (it looks like) a week or two after a prescribed burn. the smell was fertile.

saw our first round-lobed liverwort too—the hairs on the scape don’t come across in the photos, but they were thick with white hairs, and heavy-laden with pollen.


char and ash dust the ground

below a cardinal’s rapid song

the gravelly knob’s singed scent



on bald bluff

sun basking


a great relief of land

mossed arms of oak

reach out over liverwort

sna poems, supplementum #18: 7 bridges trail in grant park

the seven bridges trail in grant park in south milwaukee winds thru woods and ravines leading down to a stone-strewn beach on lake michigan. the first spring ephemerals are showing their blooms now, though they weren’t open yet. a very wet and grey day, perfect for spring woods and water. new life!

bonus: i learned on this trip that “lannon stone” is a kind of dolomite limestone quarried from the 1830s in lannon, wisconsin in waukesha county (featured under the tiny succulents and moss in the photo above). i grew up around the block from “the lannon stone motel” in janesville, and my dad lived there for a bit when he first moved to wisconsin from new york. i had never even wondered what the motel’s name meant—familiarity breeds a lack of curiosity, i suppose. that little spot on racine st. in janesville feels richer in my mind today.


snowdrops rejoice in leaf-litter,

grey air damp and draping

the scape’s pendulous gift


lannon stone penthouse bulbs

showering bare soil

with scilla bells nodding

mallards happy as clams—mama just plunked down for a nap on her logperch. lake michigan in background.