preparations, thinking and doing

nourishing terrains has captured my imagination
and i parallel it with braiding sweetgrass
and i unearthed this book while packing and prepping.
i imagine there may still be places where you can see paintings
that look to me like dreamings
having grown up near the great lakes
instead of my family's west virginia mountains
i feel a connection
and now i remember climbing around in the red shale
of the niagara river gorge.

there's even a checkerboard
and a map
oh, love this one rich with imagery
and yet these are drawings of originals
i'm getting tidy here
outside robin takes advantage
of a big driveway puddle

and this, this is a photo 
of the rock surface
taken 60 years ago
how lichen is changing the dream.
 this dream 
  my boat here is a pasture.
 where grows poor (wo)man's asparagus
that i didn't harvest
because it's needed by other ones soon.
 and on my morning walk i passed three
barefoot amish boys 
stairstep sized, on their way
to sunday church.
my church will be instead
the songbirds
finishing the packing
thinking of the words and love of friends
and family and my love,
as i prepare to rise tomorrow morning
at three or so
to meet the plane in ottawa
for victoria.

a braid, of sorts

i live about an hour's drive from tupper lake.
to visit the park (adirondack forest preserve)
i drive through vast stretches of forest,
known as the five ponds wilderness area
when i moved to the north country
35 years ago, i landed in star lake
down the road from tupper lake.
where, yesterday, i journeyed
to wind up at the WILD CENTER.
the meander path 
is human made and 
tinted with the iron of our geology
(there were iron ore mines closeby)
and textured with the trees.

  i left the camera in the car
so when i returned later to photograph, the bright light had 
turned to 
rain, so photos were challenging.
 the attention to detail everywhere
shake you up.
 these hold my hand nicely,
which surprised me.

 it's simple really
 but so beautiful
this architecture...
 so like outside
 in the small theater 
i sat in a fine seat
ready for a talk
given by robin wall kimmerer.
she spoke in story and science words
and read from braiding sweetgrass.
she held a braid of sweetgrass as she spoke to us, 
showed us pictures, 
asked us for our questions,
prompted some answers...
i introduced myself after
 (i'd brought my book)
but i'm afraid my copy is full of book marks and notes 
and from her talk i made more notes
 i did ask her to sign it for me
 she graciously did. 
i thought about her words
all the way home
through cranberry lake
and to my new home near the blue line.
when you get to meet someone you 
respect so much,
well it can be a watershed moment: 
it was.
it became evident to me that this woman 
is a teacher, and it would be such a fine thing
to be her student
at ESF in syracuse.
but for me, i will read her words
try to
remember her words, 
and talk to the plants with the respect that they,
our first teachers
must have.