Burning Bridges

Scraps of wood cut from old planks that once spanned the Rio Grande, reawakened as borders to raised beds for a garden that barely produced.

This wood, heavy and dark and four inches thick smelling of age and time and stories I’ll never know, salvaged timbers to the old Little Squaw bridge, crossing the river almost ten miles below us as the water flows, the dirt road goes.  One more life stirring, one more use, burning in my woodstove, relieving the morning chill, mesmerizing me with the crackle and hiss of its final song as the flames in the stove wave like branches in the spring wind.

Burning bridges.

Would you believe so literally?

What’s next, she asked and awaited a response to arrive in the twisting air?

Blow, wind, blow.

Share with me your secrets; allow me to share my passion.

Spread my wings, force me to take flight, lift me higher and higher again.

In a wild spiral.

My once tamed hair flying free in the wind.

My once calmed heart stirring where we thought we could keep it calm.

I cannot hold back the hoot and holler as I run down to the Rio Grande and lose my voice in the fierce flow of the last of her roaring spring waters.



Change comes in odd ways.  Often not as we expect.  Taking on an appearance so different than that which we were looking for.

The dog sits on the deck watching deer at his horse’s salt lick.

The horses settle into the routine, coming to my call, standing patiently through grooming, saddling and then keeping an open mind to the surprise of where I will lead them to today.

Summertime neighbors, old replaced by new, a changing of the guard and new life to a seasonal community, an excitement by the freshness of faces, ideas, beautiful new stories spread out like picnic blankets on a sunny day.

Evening light casting shadows of the Blue Spruce like daggers across the open flats.  The chartreuse wash of newly emerging Aspen leaves.  Freezing temperatures in the morning lace the sides of the creek with bouquets of frozen water that bloom only until eight a.m.

My son, evolving to his own direction and destination and forming his world like a sculptor. More often than not staring at the ball of clay before him and wishing it might portend the future more like a crystal ball. My husband, embracing the “encore career” and the mining community after thirty years of running his own business and, more often than not, doing it all himself.

Myself, awaiting a change I know will come, yet have no idea what to look for. I open my mouth and wait for the song to begin but the words do not come.


I long and listen for a song I do not hear but somehow know the tune.  It is not one I have heard before.

As wild as the wind.

Nothing stays the same.

So, go ahead, burn those bridges.  Find a new use for old timbers.  And get to work spanning the river with a new one.

7 thoughts on “Burning Bridges

  1. Love this; Burning bridges! I laughed so hard at the double-triple-on- and-on meanings curling around your words like wisps of smoke, like bridges crossed and bridges burned…
    Love you XO

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