The painting above is a work by Ron Peters. You can view more of his paintings at
                                      LEAVING ST CROIX

                The palms shook down                                                                                                         shade to rescue us
                                              from the fainting sand,                                                                                                             and July's water was a little too                                                                                            warm to refresh everyone's                                                                                                   bare feet.                                                                                                                                     Heat makes the vacation:
                                                  that, and the outdoor ceiling                                                                                                fans and the drinks
                                                with straws and pineapples                                                                                                        and floating cherries.                                                                                                   You tried to tell yourself it                                                                                                   would be different if you                                                                                                   lived there:
           that the water was only that gorgeous silver blue
           color because it belonged to someone else and not you
       and that rainbow beach had problems and bills
              like everywhere else.

But the hibiscus so red and loud,
                & the bold humming birds,
                the guava, palm and coconut trees,
                  the surf and all those tiny shells,
               they shouted to you,
         "You lie!"

                The sun gave away too easily its truth.
She slid nickel like down the earth's slotted edge,
then finally out of sight.
           She teased you to watch for her illusive green flash.

            And the night on the island brought only friends,
           and a dark blue water.
The island's rhythm slowed your heart and breath to match its own,
to make it its own.
             You knew you never
                truly would go back to a busy life:
    never truly leave,
even if you did.