June 20, 2012
Continuation, alteration of the poem I started Monday:
A new ending, though it’s still not right. Interesting to find something so simple so challenging. Endings. I gotta work on mine.
Back to the place
Where we were birthed
Or are we born again
Nope. Not there yet.
Oh, forget it. Onto a new start:
I wept tears like raindrops
Pregnant with promise
(now is this too cliché?)
Pouring upon the land
Dousing sparks of unrest
In changing times
A land hot and swollen as my crying eyes
Sadness for the loss of life upon the now red hills
My sisters standing before me
Stripped and whipped
Waves of grace flow and settle like smoke from approaching fires
Tears like raindrops
Falling through the cracks
Of a parched land
Raped and left to die
Our land of plenty
And now my mother weeps
Left lying in a heap before us
Blood we are unable to wash free from our hands
As needles from the dying trees fall
Lining the yellow brick road to where I wonder
I am suffocated, suppressed
By my own sadness
A song upon the metal roof
Friend and fellow writer, Tricia’s M. Cook, has just published a new post on her blog over at Mountain Gazette entitled, “Hunting Bears,” an essay for those who know and love these furry beasts. Me, I can be as wild as any wild beast and willing to hold my own and fight for it if need be. You stay on your side of the fence, I’ll stay on mine. I choose to live in bear country, and I stake a little claim there. And yes, I will defend it, though I’m happy to let the bear do as she pleases on her side of the fence. I believe Ursa, like my friend Coyote, can be trained. See this line? Don’t cross it. And don’t, definitely don’t mess with my watermelons, as the old story goes. Tricia has a slightly different way of seeing things. Please read for yourselves.
Which reminds me. The free range cows have come for the season. How out of place can an animal be, seeing domestic cattle up above tree line.
The semi’s arrived, and how many hundred pair are left to learn the perils of the High Country. Never a popular moment. Nor will it be after they are gathered for the season, and we are left to find the strays. Or carcasses.
Our Forest Service calls it multiple use. A lovely term. I call it putting up with cow shit and closed gates for the profit of the one rich man who owns them. Go figure.
But this much I’ve learned: you might wanna still be a cowboy, but I’d rather keep working at being a horse(wo)man. Hooting, hollering and riding the road in a dusty wake behind a bunch of loud and stinky cows destined for slaughter isn’t really my thing. Why do we still use that term, “cowboy,” for those of us that work horses, not cows? Cowboy. Consider it. Part cow? Ever look deep into a cow’s eyes? I use the term “deep” loosely here, if you know what I mean. So, as you can figure, I’d rather stick with being a horseperson and leave the “cow” part for the dinner table.
And I end today’s post (are you still here with me?) with these simple words:
I care not to live someone else’s dream
And try to wake early enough to remember my own.
April 26, 2011
Though the world outside my window might not look the part, as I write this, my thoughts are on spring. Spring in the high country. Melting snow, brown waters, exposed hillsides, and mud.
Every day for a week now, it has snowed. Just when we were ready for spring. Just when we were ready to work the horses, fix fences, turn the garden soil, and put up new roofing on our little cabin.
If this had been winter, we’d have called it “awesome.” My son’s school work would be left and he’d be out in it. Maybe the mild winter was a good thing.
But now it is spring, and we’ve got things to do. This was not in our plans. Yet, as you know, here one cannot complain about the moisture. Just when we were beginning to worry about another drought year.
And then, before you know it, it will be summer. Days will be warm. The down jacket left on the hook and the heavy mud boots pushed under the stool in the entrance. The ground will be dry. Leaves will be coming on the trees and the grass will start to green. Me, I’ll be in the garden, out riding the trails, visiting with guests, enjoying a leisurely lunch on the deck. The river will be calm and clear, fish jumping at the latest hatch. Someone, somewhere along this beautiful stretch of the Rio Grande, will be tossing lines and trying to emulate a part of that hatch.
Everything changes in spring. Snow recedes. Roads open. And with the open road, the tourists slowly trickle by, seemingly shocked that spring has not yet made it up this high. An odd curiosity to arrive and not see what you remember. Unfulfilled memories of long, leisurely lingering days for those who come to get away. They turn their backs to the blowing snow and turn their vehicles back downhill.
There is much more to this mountain than summer.