Thursday, December 20, 2012


JH says "two thousand twelve gets closer every year"
this was two thousand four
Los Incas on the turntable and
really dinosaurs stalking annelids in the wet grass
and the San Pedro stew setting in

JB says "don't wear out that jacket"
or, "don't wear that jacket out"
or maybe, "don't out wear that jacket"
the meaning melting off the words and
I'm dumbly out wearing a brown suit coat with green paisley lining

BE says, not much really
On Land wooming out the open windows
of the Volvo wagon as we roll up
Hi Mountain Road and
unnamed Cretaceous sandstones are budding across the ridge

AK also quiet in aviator glasses
when we get to the peak and stroll to the lookout
a woman, a volunteer, a docent, a wildlife biologist
I'm not exactly sure
is wanding a radio antenna left and right in long slow arcs

CL says "we had number 22 fly over last weekend, I could see the wing tag"
we all look up
"She's not there now"
Rufous Hummingbirds are zipping and flitting
and later the sky busts open into Paracas tapestry

stop me if you've heard this one.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

A parable:

Coming home from Bells Bend, on a failed jaunt to see the Whooping Cranes.

Drove past this fellow once. Heroically midway in the oncoming lane. I am aware, thanks to the internet, that people regularly intervene in chelonian road-crossing events. It is a thing. It is done.

"Flipped a bitch" with the help of a gated drive. Now (then) I've got a Lexus behind me with the box turtle square in the left tire kill zone. Pointedly I ease over onto the shoulder and around the little man with a wide berth. I hope the Lexus is watching.

Now past the turtle, Lexus is rapidly approaching with no sign of deviance from its luxury path. Rotten phytoplankton from Tethys, Caricao, Gulf, Central American Seaway, North Slope (ichthyosaurs flipping about the Otuk/Shublik seas) who knows, sparked by artificial lightning cast by fingers of metal and clay, fed by atmospheric oxygen spewed from the cells of the lineal descendants of the same dead plants, exploding in the cylinder, pushing the piston, cam, camshaft, torque, drive line, axle, hub, rubber tire, strange alchemy of atmosphere, lithosphere, biosphere.

And I'm all, "nah dude, turn, turn, turn, turn,"

And the Lexus veers.

And I continue on past the road crew that's eyeing me with suspicion now for too many passes (but there will be one more!)

And onto the sod farm road. Three point turn, and around again. Past the Osage Oranges and Hickory Trees, up onto shoulder. Hazards on. Now approaching the reptile who is just to the double yellow.

Who sees me, and hunkers down, sealed with a hiss.

I like the way this turtle feels. In my hand. Heavy for its size. This is how the experts suggest you select a cantaloupe. The anterior marginals are dinged. Maybe a past very lucky run-in with the terror machines or who knows what. And I walk it to the far side of the road, hoping we can read a turtle's intention by the vector orientation. Anyway. What else can I do?

On finishing things:
feeling doomed
and not halfway done
passed by fate
shielded by fate
ferried by fate

it's enough to make you worship beardy dudes in Subarus.