The Breaks

The shadowy network of sunshine

brightening tiny bits of ground beneath my feet

sparrows chirp in unison with each push of the wind

rock ledge overhang traps both heat and thought

richness of pine smoke

wavering with graceful heaviness on its journey towards the whirling sky

the passing of each second leads to the past hours

so close by in my mind

each gully extending downward from the ridgeline

like fingers from the inevitable grasp of the rockies

sturdy horns with built bodies, eventful days

eyes telling whether or not they have consciousness

white tipped antlers all that is seen

after faltering shots

humming still vibrant in my ears

I watch the graceful jog of four footed hooves

marred with life, pass from sight

Back now here

the downfall dance of nickel sized snowflakes

huddled, wet feet close to warmth

coats draped on nearby branch

drying the hours of rain now past

the universe seems to lie in these enveloping mountains

and the drooping clouds hanging over the next ridge

the smell of burning plastic brings me back to the fire

I pull the boots back

sticky tar on edge of sole

primitive pleasure and an easy laugh

with only my burly cousin nearby

and miles of wilderness in every direction

time seems to stop if not for the falling snow

I swear this place hides the dwelling of dragons

of ancient wars and buffalo herds

all in the visual existence of erosion

ten seconds played back over and over for the remainder of the trip

Now, less wet and smelling of soot

we leave our first fire

laden with the passing of calm words

under the passing of ground beneath of everflowing feet

cousin, heavy set, attentive eyes and simple pace

we continue onward

another miles of sagebrush valleys,

tan green grass and the smell of deer rut all around

snow still no better than before 

seeing osprey lurking in the grey world above

around each lingering bend you expect a dinosaur

to come with roaring call and stampeding jaunt

or the natives of past days

giant fires and bone built drums

their only goal to extend the growth

of all minds' pleasures and hate

all wrapped up in vicious swinging dances

vibrant under the night's sky

but, same spot in different times

there is only screaming from the trees

of a chipmunk wary of my arrival to it's home

Soaked again

tired and meandering down forgotten trails

we find a single lonesome cabin

built of ancient wood and lost nails

no sense of time

it has been the same grey since morning light

speaking, fire bright

eyes eager 

started with lighter and cardboard

there is always something that draws your mind back to the city

warmth drying clothes and passing time

low fire, finally dry

dark sky getting darker

thoughts of food and warming camper high in hills

the home far away

lying hundreds of miles from here

slowly, picking up all we brought

making the steady final push back to world

two stagnant hills and darkness finally sinks in

everywhere now only blinding white

against the backdrop of abyss like night

roaring wind, flying flakes

single headlamp shining through,

that is something I need to buy

Dawn until dark

we have walked

this is Devil's creek, Missouri Breaks

A trial for the times of the primordial

It has grasped me tightly by the shoulder

taken me into hardened arms

and wrapped, pried, and thrown itself around me

this is no protective womb for future's sake

this is life in the fullest meaning of the word

we see headlights deep in the distance

worried face behind wheel

now smiling

but after that

I gaze back behind

into the darkness which itself peers at me

now so very far from reach

I should have stayed

The End

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