You are mighty tall
Every 10 minutes driven, you have a new ecosystem.
I started off in a brown desert looking straight from the Disney movie Holes.
Then into the mossy greenery and lush shrubberies.
They looked like where the hobbits live in Lord of the Rings
To a tall shaded forest, like from the Twilight Saga in Portland
filled with invasive species of pine trees.
These were some happy trees,
I’d love to watch Bob Ross paint.
Then came the roaming cattle.
We slowed and came to a halt
To watch the calves and cows in the clouds.
They were living a happy simple life.
A family of pheasants scurried by
But what we really wanted to see was
The nēnē state bird of Hawaii.
My dad zipped around the snaking road
Through the clouds hugging the outside of the lane.
The road kept vanishing and coming back
The winding was never ending.
As if we’d take a step out into nothingness manifested:
The clouds were calming
And then irritating with the lack of visibility
“Okay Mr. Cloud you have made your point,
and can leave now.”
but he doesn’t seem to listen.
We were like the peas in pea soup.
You feel like the end of the earth.
The minimal amount of your life diminished.
Until we spotted silver sea urchins above ground.
The silversword plants in Hawaiian are ‘āhinahina
Endemic to the island of Maui
One of the only survivors at the summit
Designed with its silvery leaves to reflect sunlights
And deep taproot to stand the high winds.
It’s what I imagined lunar landscape would look like.
With the crater and the red hill and magnetic peak.
The air felt like the freshest
yet lacking in actual oxygen
My mom was getting dizzy.
We stumbled upon 25 cent citrus on the way down
And a bistro with decadent pies
That surely improved the rider’s morale.