Sometimes You Find Nothing. (Los Padres, 12/13 thru 12/14/13)
Twenty degrees beneath a diamond-cutter sky
lingering snow illuminated in crisp moonlight
we walk, breath steaming from throats, nostrils.
Burning wood, trading poems, trading sips of whiskey
weaving in and out of conversation and silence
looking upward, outward
-shooting stars, barn owls silently gliding, the cry of a distant coyote.
Sometimes you find nothing.
let frozen air sear lungs, ears
while walking alone away from the fire
-aware, alive, present.
. . .
. . .
Gray morning light brings the donning of boots
deerskin gloves, the shouldering of a rifle.
The low groaning of an unseen bear drifts through the trees
-I drift slowly through the scrub.
Fox tracks, deer tracks, cut sharp and clean in the snow
darting in and out of brush
and the sun’s first beams piercing the canopy.
Listening, walking, following.
Fresh rabbit prints drawn across a snow tongue
leading into a small ravine, beneath the woodpile of a fallen tree.
Pupils wide, I make my approach
– I find nothing,
a ghost rabbit,
an empty lair,
and my mind returning once again,
suddenly aware of itself.
(Los Padres with Michael S., 12/13 thru 12/14/2013)