Where cloudbursts tore a gash
in the shoulder of the ridge,
uprooting ferns and hedge,
a maple and an ash,
a honeysuckle vine
and wires of gold ground pine,
the slide exposed a vein
of mica, a groundhog den,
a zone of luminous clay,
revealed loose rocks like teeth,
a seam of yellow earth,
and brought to light of noon,
after half a millennium,
there in the mud, a shining
coin of the Spanish king.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.