It’s the end of April, which means it’s also the last day of National Poetry Month. To say goodbye to this month and what also feels like goodbye to Spring here since temperatures already hit 90 and the petals are all falling from the trees papering the ground like colorful snow that won’t melt, I’ve chosen one last poem from one of my favorite young poets Emma Flood. She just completed her first book of poetry and I hope it finds a publishing home soon.

Like many of Emma’s poems, this one evokes an ethereal essence mixed with youthful nostalgia, at least nostalgia for those of us who are not so youthful any longer.

It also encapsulates a sense of wanderlust and fantasy in a few brief stanzas. I still dream of jumping in a convertible in summer (although now it also pulls a tiny house) and driving off across the country, no plan, no cares, just looking for adventures. It’s something that this poem makes still feel possible.

Here’s one last poem before April and National Poetry Month are gone.

by Emma Flood

pac coast highway

That dream where we’re coasting down
the 101
for once there isn’t any traffic
and I don’t have to blink seven times
past each streetlight
to see through the fog.

That dream where I am not in California
at all,
those cacti blooming up
bloody bulbs of pure romance,
cupping promise of something inevitable
in open petals.

That dream where snowcapped mountains
get stuck on top of our knees
and I never actually
made it onto the plane.

That dream where there wasn’t a plane
at all,
and we were happy with our cacti
our snow
my old Buick.

Instead of feeling that
the dream was
but here.