Say Yes

say yes

at the foot of the mountain
with all your belongings
abandoned behind you
or weight on your back

say yes

though you wonder if waters’
ahead or enough at your side
in the blue Nalgene bottle
that keeps falling off

say yes

when you first cross the threshold
and stare at your feet packaged
neatly in Lowas of leather and
wonder how far they can go and

say yes

looking up at the mountain
the tree line, the granite
majestic but helplessly
high and far off

say yes

when you stumble and courage
abandons you saying
so many years lost on
a No
that you’ve got to


say yes to today

to this moment
and not to regretting
the past

say yes to your left foot
say yes to your right foot
let the drumbeat of walking
affirmative pound in your ear

just say yes to the sunshine
and yes to the shadows
and yes to the sunscreen

and yes
to the weight of the warmth
that you packed even
though you might not
ever need it

say yes

just keep on
saying yes
that’s the word
you can feel
in your bones
at the end
of the hike
it’s a word
you can
stand on
when finally
you look
from the heights
to the valley
and know
that you
made it
so far
just because
you let happiness
happen with
and kept


–Katie Baptist

Image: Rainstorm beneath the Summit by 19th century Japanese painter Hokusai, from the series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji

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