bottom of the franklin hill and back
30 degrees / snowing
100% soft snow-covered
What a wonderful run! Even the soft, slippery snow couldn’t bother me. So difficult to move through, nothing solid or stable. Who cares? I got to run outside by the gorge when it was snowing! A soft, steady snow. A winter wonderland. The sky was a light gray, almost white. The river was a grayish brownish blue. I liked watching the headlights from the cars as they approached. The bright lights cutting through the gray — not gloomy, but monotonous.
At the start of my run, I smelled smoke from someone’s chimney.
I heard the birds chattering.
I felt my feet slipping on the soft, uneven ground.
I saw a walker up ahead on the road, waving their arms in an awkward rhythm.
Did I taste anything — a snowflake, maybe?
No fat tires or cross country skiers. A few sets of runners — or was it the same set seen twice? No honking horns from cars. Although I did hear some geese honking under the trestle. And I also heard the steady rush of cars moving across the 1-94 bridge.
At the end of my run, I heard the irritating screech of a blue jay. I wondered (and hope) that once I passed and the danger was over, I might hear the sharp, tin-whistle sound of a blue jay’s song. Nope.
In the middle of my run, after turning around at the bottom of the franklin hill and then running until I reached the bridge, I stopped to pull out my phone and record some thoughts and sounds:
It’s difficult to pick up, but in the middle, when I stop talking and stop walking, you can hear the soft tinkle-tinkle of the snow hitting my jacket. In the moment, standing there, the sound was much louder and so delightful! Hearing it, then looking down at the still river and up at quiet gray sky and the bare branches, was magical.
I found this poem on twitter this morning. I decided to add it to my collection of dirt/dust/earth poems that I started during my monthly challenge last April. I also decided to add it here:
Return to Sender/ Matthew Olzman
To the topsoil and subsoil: returned.
To hums and blistered rock: returned.
To the kingdom of the masked chafer beetle,
the nematode and the root maggot: returned.
To the darkness were a solitary star-nosed mole
arranger her possessions and pulses
through a slow hallway, and to the vastness
where twenty-thousand garden ants compose
a tangled metropolis: returned.
it was summer, and they lowered
a body into the ground. I did not say
they lowered you into the ground.
It seemed like you were elsewhere, but the preacher
insisted: And now, he returns to the One who made him.
Most likely, he meant: God. But I thought
he meant the Earth, that immensity
where everything changes, buzzes, is alive again and —
The poetry person who tweeted about this poem especially liked the twenty-thousand garden ants and the italics from the preacher. I like the possessions and pulses, the tangled metropolis, the separation between body and You, and the idea that the maker we return to (and are reborn in) is the Earth.