Wednesday (2), 3/20/2013

That line of leathery green leaves
in the field (they'll bloom Pink Ladies
    in summer)
             marks, maybe
a garden path once attached
to a house (gone),
    the water pump nearby
we use now
to regulate well water
from tanks on the hill

eucalyptus planted in perfectly
straight rows, someone's failed
moneymaker 
     now "invasive species"
     spindly skyscrapers,
     the hawks' nesting on
          a sea of leaves
they look for Australia,
those leaves
       the raptors, too
search

a line of plum trees, the fruit
mostly inedible, sourish
   Before the eucalyptus,
   the pink ladies, and plums
        this was the oaks' 
maternal domain

My fifth year walking down and up
Walker Valley Rd., between oaks dying and
oaks living still ---

That first stroll, with
Gracie (my dog) I stumbled
on a pot-hole and fell, not knowing
the road; scraped my wrist and knee. 
        Now I know what weedy patch
the Boletes prefer,
where the "secret"  
deer paths lead 
down to asphalt,

where the lottery tickets are
discarded, and where
          this afternoon
a St. Patrick's day green
bagel on the roadside gravel,
half-eaten.

Lines:

June 7, 1852. We had a good walk, W.E.C. & I
along the Bank of the North Branch to the swamp, &
to the "Harrington Estate." C's young dog scampered
& dived & swam at such a prodigal rate, that one
could not help grudging the youth of the Universe
(the animals) their Heaven.

---Ralph Waldo Emerson, from "GO 1852-1853," 
Selected Journals 1841-1877, p. 594.


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