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    blurry green and brown

    Chanterelles

    Jonathan Graham

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    • Lawrence Hall

      Brilliant! Funny! Thoughtful! Skillful! Thank you!

    The chanterelles lie in the rain-soaked leaves
    like orange hibiscus flowers. In the dirt,
    mycelium communicates unseen
    with rootlets of an oak. Your eyes revert

    from mine back down to scan the muddy ground
    for mushrooms – I can tell you Latin names
    for each; and where each species can be found;
    and when to look for each kind after rain;

    and which Lactarii are good to eat,
    and which you will regret; and how to tell
    the “Jack-O-Lantern” glowing at your feet
    (an O. Illudens) from a chanterelle.

    I’m so well-versed in fungal quiddity –
    but six years in, you’re still a mystery.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    an orange chanterelle mushroom growing in leaves and sticks
    Contributed By

    Jonathan Graham lives with his wife and son in Charleston, South Carolina. A student of Latin and Greek, his poetry has been published at The American Journal of Poetry, West Trade Review, and Holt Magazine. His essays have appeared at The Federalist and Fides Quaerens. In his free time, he likes to hunt, fish, and gather.

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