A Walk to the River
Every afternoon I have been walking down to the beaches I go to in summertime and doing yoga on the sand. It is cold sometimes and too wet but worth it. Today I walked down past Sweet's Right past the gate were the first flowers. The little yellow daisy type which grows on the grey shist where nothing else can live and amazing me that they look so happy there. On down the road, I could hear the frogs making a racket in the wet soggy pond. Samson ran all around them, and they continued unabated, this huge chorus surrounded by silence. The sky was clear blue, and the unburned trees healthy and full of life. The day's hike was slowly unfolding. As I approached, the frogs got quieter and quieter and finally stopped altogether as I went past. Did they see my shadow, hear the vibration of my steps? Maybe there is a sentry keeping watch who gives the signal. It was very quiet and only as I was far down the hill did I hear them take it up again.
The snow had bent the buckbrush over the path. Past the Sweet's house, the road begins to be washed away, and a small rivelet wanders back and forth, making the walk more difficult. Several fir trees had toppled over pulling their roots out of the ground and I considered coming down here with the truck(which would be difficult)and picking them up(would need help) and taking them up to the house to plant since they all were maybe 10 years old and bigger than any of the seedlings that sprouted after the fire. Eventually I had to bend way over to get through the brush got stung in the check by small branches and scratched. Samson runs ahead and we make the turn to go past the Vale of grapevines . Big oaks had fallen in the winter. Saw a russula mushroom and on down and out to the point to sit and look at the confluence and wonder at the magnificence of water and rock and nature free to obey it's own urges. From the mouth of Grouse Creek on to Salyer it is all wilderness. So precious and free. I have to bow to it. The point is high enough to send the thrill of falling through me as I look over the edge. Samson is down on the beach already, but soon comes back up to join me, making me nervous as he stands right on the edge; so I go on down to the beach and start the yoga. I do some Qi Gong also, the mind is finally worn out of words and I am tired and relaxed. We walk over to Grouse Creek and walk up the bank. There are levels where the high water has come. Lower one gravel. Upper one, covered with leaves and moss. The Alder catkins droop gracefully from their branches. Sweetness.
We start back up the hill. It is going to be a long walk. Slowly, slowly. A huge madrone is down in the path with a rotten fir fallen over it. How heedlessly they fall, bashing slamming crashing. Nature isn't careful or neat. Wild country looks out of control. Life and death are intertwined, not neatly seperated as we try to order our world, keeping all the good things where we can see them, and all the bad things out of sight. Chaotic. I have learned to love it. I think about everything I have and everything that I have lost. It is the story of a life. The dignity of it moves me.
I rest and drink water at the Sweet's meadow while Samson sits and waits. We get up and walk on up the drive, slowly, an easy pace, the trip about over and again the frogs. They silence as I go by though I try to step lightly to see if they hear. They do.
Finally the truck. A scratch on the shoulder, two tics, sting on the face, tired legs and more water to drink. A good day.