There was rain and hail* in the valley Sunday morning but then there was a break and we thought, “Now or never” and headed up to Millcreek. We hit snow going up and it was a brisk 44 degrees mid-canyon, but it was beautiful. Like a Chinese brush painting, or a Mahler song cycle.
*Since this blog is now becoming The Feral Cat Times, Oliver was in his house during the rain and it stayed much dryer (we put it on the outdoor rug to cut down splashback. Still working on a better fix, though).
We went up the Willow Heights trail Sunday straight into a John Denver paradise: blue skies, bluebells and lupins and forget-me-nots in bloom, crossing an aspen forest to a lake.
I’ve been discovering Rocky Mountain High after dismissing it for years as corny. But it’s about the perfect summation of being happy in the mountains that I’ve found:
“And oh, I love the life within me, I feel a part of everything I see.
And oh, I love the life around me, a part of everything is here in me.”
by John Brehm
In all the woods that day I was
the only living thing
fretful, exhausted, or unsure.
Giant fir and spruce and cedar trees
that had stood their ground
three hundred years
stretched in sunlight calmly
unimpressed by whatever
it was that held me
hunched and tense above the stream,
biting my nails, calculating all
Nor did the water pause
to reflect or enter into
It found its way
over and around a crowd
of rocks in easy flourishes,
in laughing evasions and
shifts in direction.
Nothing could slow it down for long.
It even made a little song
out of all the things
that got in its way,
a music against the hard edges
of whatever might interrupt its going.
It’s time to break out my favorite Wallace Stevens poem for a post title–“at the end of winter, when afternoons return.” None of us could get enough sunshine: