I Dream That Canyon in Tepusquet

I try to notice details of the natural world, but am also interested in the nature of dreams. Tepusquet (the last syllable rhyming with “kay”) is an area on California’s Central Coast. 


I Dream That Canyon in Tepusquet…


damned far up the trail

with the pipe

some cowboy pushed into

the spring

spilling water into the trough

echoing off rock walls

back off the small wind

of bees

of sycamore

and oak leaves

that shade quail

and coyote prints

crisp in

dried mud.

On the canyon’s

southern flanks

grass turns dry-golden

by June.

Yet these dreams are

temporary things

as is the dreamer,

as are you, dear reader,

who with me

hikes this day

up that canyon

in Tepusquet.

Published by


I've been writing mostly poetry for many years and have gotten a number of works accepted in publications and anthologies. I'm most interested in communicating with poets for whom craft is a high priority. I enjoy finding and commenting on poetic gems in other people's work. For my own work, I welcome polite comments, whether positive or critical.

5 thoughts on “I Dream That Canyon in Tepusquet”

  1. I can smell the sage and heat & mud at the water trough. And I can hear the quail quietly talking in the brush. That’s why we love it here!

    So glad we ran into Jim and that you emailed. I understand you are up in the Santa Rosa area (David’s family lived in Guerneville from just after WWII til his mother’s death in 2011).
    I’m loving retirement–10 years now–it is getting to the point that most folk I worked with are retired too. We are still riding the mules but they and we are aging together. So, no pack trips into the forest this past year.

    Best wishes for the holidays & New Year.



  2. Michael … This is Dave Clary … I find your poem to be very evocative of the appeal of this area and the Santa Barbara County back country in general. I will download and keep a copy.
    I have been most interested in photography lately. To reciprocate for your poem, If I can find it I will send a photo of my grandfather’s shoe store right after the 1906 earthquake, which did more damage to Santa Rosa than to San Francisco.


    1. Dave, thanks for your comment and also for telling me about your grandfather. I’d love to see the photo. I’m volunteering as a tour docent at Jack London State Park, about 15 minutes from here in Glen Ellen. When Jack and his wife felt the big quake they rode their horses to the top of Sonoma Peak where they could see the smoke from the San Francisco fires and, to the north, the smoke from the Santa Rosa fires. Amazing stuff.


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