minnehaha falls and back
Another sunny, warmer (than last week) day. The paths were clear, the sky was blue, the sun was out. Earlier today, driving over to my annual mammogram, there was a haze in the gorge, but by a few hours later, during my run, it was gone. No headphones on the way to the falls, Lizzo’s Special on the way back. The falls was half frozen, half dripping. All the steps down below are blocked off now for the winter. The steps down to Winchell are too. Heard the general chatter of birds, sounding like spring. Greeted Mr. Walker (I named him in an entry on sept 12 of this year) — Hello not Good morning.
11 Things I Noticed
- the strong smell of pot as I passed a car in the 36th st parking lot
- a guy walking, listening to music without headphones — can’t remember what kind of music it was. Passed him twice
- a woman and a kid walking above the falls, admiring it at my favorite spot
- bright orange below the double bridge — somebody must have spray painted it
- a lone walker below me on the Winchell Trail
- Later, 2 laughing women on the Winchell Trail
- the river was burning white again — shimmering in the sun through the trees
- running past the southern entrance to the Winchell Trail, I could see through the bare trees all the way to the stone wall that wrapped around the grassy overlook
- also had a clear view of the oak savanna and the mesa through the leafless trees
- a loud scraping noise from some part of a car, dragging on the road
- my shadow, running beside me — strong in form and definition, a very dark gray in color
Today’s gray: fog and mist
Translated from the Italian by Geoffrey Brock
Hide what is far from my eyes,
pale fog, impalpable gray
vapor climbing the light
of the coming day,
after the storm-streaked night,
the rockfall skies…
Hide what has gone, and what goes,
hide what lies beyond me…
Let me see only that hedge
at my boundary,
and this wall, by whose crumbling edge
Hide from my eyes what is dead:
the world is drunk on tears…
Show my two peach trees in bloom,
my two pears,
that spread their sugared balm
on my black bread.
Hide from my eyes lost things
whose need for my love is a goad…
Let me see only the white
of the stone road –
I too will ride it some night
as a tired bell rings.
Hide the far things – hide
them beyond the sweep of my heart…
Show only that cypress tree,
and here, lying sleepily,
this dog at my side.
In the Fog/ Giovanni Pascoli
TRANSLATED BY GEOFFREY BROCK
I stared into the valley: it was gone—
wholly submerged! A vast flat sea remained,
gray, with no waves, no beaches; all was one.
And here and there I noticed, when I strained,
the alien clamoring of small, wild voices:
birds that had lost their way in that vain land.
And high above, the skeletons of beeches,
as if suspended, and the reveries
of ruins and of the hermit’s hidden reaches.
And a dog yelped and yelped, as if in fear,
I knew not where nor why. Perhaps he heard
strange footsteps, neither far away nor near—
echoing footsteps, neither slow nor quick,
alternating, eternal. Down I stared,
but I saw nothing, no one, looking back.
The reveries of ruins asked: “Will no
one come?” The skeletons of trees inquired:
“And who are you, forever on the go?”
I may have seen a shadow then, an errant
shadow, bearing a bundle on its head.
I saw—and no more saw, in the same instant.
All I could hear were the uneasy screeches
of the lost birds, the yelping of the stray,
and, on that sea that lacked both waves and beaches,
the footsteps, neither near nor far away.
Mist/ Alice Oswald
It amazes me when mist
chloroforms the fields
and wipes out whatever world exists
and walkers wade through coma
and close to but curtained from each other
sometimes there’s a second river
lying asleep along the river
where the sun rises
sunk in thought
and my soul gets caught in it
hung by the heels
it amazes me when mist
weeps as it lifts
and a crow
calls down to me in its treetop voice
that there are webs and drips
and actualities up there
and in my fog-self shocked and grey
it startles me to see the sky