bike: 8.5 miles
lake nokomis and back
Another hot day. Tomorrow, 20 degrees cooler. Windy too. I could feel it rushing past my ears. No panic on the bike — my brain has adjusted to my current state of (not) seeing. As usual, the bike ride back felt faster (time and speed) than the ride there.
5 Biking Things and 5 Swimming Things
- sewer construction all around the neighborhood — half of the street was blocked with trucks or huge circular holes in the pavement or pipes
- biking past the falls: they’ve patched (only) part of the potholes on the bike path near godfrey, the rest are still bumpy
- the creek on the other side of the duck bridge: mucky, stagnant, low — yuck!
- passing under the duck bridge, biking slowly and carefully, I heard a shuffling noise but couldn’t see anyone for a few seconds. Oh, there they are — a walker on the other side of the path
- a sound like rushing water near the bridge over Lake Hiawatha — I’m pretty sure it was wind. So much wind!
- blowing up my safety buoy near the bike rack, a man said, it’s windy out there today! when I responded with some noise — a grunt? — he added, it’s making you work for it
- swimming one direction, being pushed from behind and (a little) under, swimming the other direction, slam! straight into little walls of water
- screeching seagulls near the shore, honking geese on the other side
- stopped at the farthest white buoy to adjust my nose plug: a big splash less than 25 feet away — was it a fish? a boat? a fishing seagull? something menacing about to swim into me?
- more ghost vines below me and a wandering swimmer that I think I actually saw and didn’t just imagine
swim: 1.5 loops
lake nokomis main beach
Very choppy and surprisingly cool. With all of the 100 degree weather, I thought the water would be warmer. Opaque water, deep near the white buoys, shallow near the orange ones. My shoulders felt strong, my calves a little strange — sore? ready to cramp? When I finished my swim, I stood, then sat, in the shallow water and looked out at the lake, wondering if this would be my final swim of the year. What a wonderful season!
writing while walking (some sources)
Coastal scientists describe a coast as fractal—dividing infinitely into smaller and smaller increments, all the way down to a protruding rock, a tide line, or even a boot track that fills with water and extends the water’s edge. In retrospect, I would define the relationship of coast to poetic line much as you do. In practice, though, I arrived at the form by creating it, abandoning others that felt unrelated to the landscape or its foot-feel. There are rhythms to walking on rough ground, a step-after-step persistence that swallows obstacles, like irregular lines that nonetheless carry forward through the poem. There’s also a sensory excitement in a sea-rock-light-wind-bird-flower-seal-seep-peat-rain-salt—oh look, there’s a whale!—environment that subsumes attention to any one thing into the press of the whole. I don’t compose on foot as Brian Teare has described in his essay “En Plein Air Poetics,” but I share what he calls the “proprioceptive ecstasy” of oxygen-filled blood and an unlocked mind.from The Syntax of Sedimentation: An Interview with Susan Tichy
I think I need to order and study — a monthly challenge? — Tichy’s North | Rock | Edge
One of the primary ways I make ecopoetics an active practice is by drafting poems on foot in the field.
Writing while walking makes explicit the intimate relationship between a site and my body, and though writing while walking obviously privileges language as its end-product, it derives that language from relation lived through the physical especially.En Plein Air Poetics: Notes Towards Writing in the Anthropocene / Brian Teare