Sunday, November 13, 2005

A Walk into the Burn

I walked up to Mike’s today through the little meadow and past manzanita fire blackened skeletons. The ground is down to mineral soil around them so hot it burned. In places, a moss rusty in color with tiny seed spikes is all that grows. Forbes are scattered knee high, some small daisy yellow flowers and a sweet tiny pink flower on thin violet branches, like the design on some rich woman’s dress. I stooped to touch them they seemed so precious.

The landscape is transformed so that couldn't recognize where I was, where the old dope patch was, or the cedar which fell into the fork of another tree making an inclined gate across the path of the horse trail Manzanita Ranch used. The small streams were running. The ground further on littered with dead and down trees, but there were some small germinationion of fir and pine. The edges of the back meadow still look as if a bomb had been dropped so careless was the slash and logging debris. But up higher the cat had cleared a lot of the dead trees and left the ground smooth and ready for planting and there is now a road on the ridge from which there is a view of the South Fork to the south and Salyer to the north and a 360 degree panorama of mountain and river canyon. On the edge of the ridge to my surprise you could even see the rock and gravel high water mark of the South Fork and there was Red Point and a feeling of expanse. Stunning. I fooled around looking for the perfect place for a small dwelling. At one place I could look down on my cabin here which was a very creepy feeling--like I was spying on myself and on my life which I had imagined was hidden, secluded--like I would see myself come out and bring in some wood, or go to the garden. Looking down at 40 years of life. Weird. It was as if I were a giant child and the cabin and garden, tool shed and powerhouse were my toy world. I could move them around, make the toy person come out of the house and feed the toy dog. A feeling of schizophrenia arose with the creepy feeling, and sadness.

I came back by the road, noting the star thistle that is coming up along the road side, seeing how easy it is to see the car and truck parked, wishing the masticater had shown up and chewed up tdebrisrie instead of having to pile and burn it. Wishing for something else other than what I’ve got. But back in the cabin with the fire going and a hot bath on the agenda, clothes drying in the warmth, I begin to accept my fate. What else can I do? Life goes on.

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