Home + Change: Memorial Day Edition

Maker:L,Date:2017-8-25,Ver:5,Lens:Kan03,Act:Kan02,E-Y
The hills are alive with Memorial Day campers and our world has changed. This morning the two blues and I headed out for some “alone time” in the national forest, as has become our habit. We were accustomed to tents in a few camp sites along the road as the weather has been warming, but this morning each one was filled.

When we rounded the bend for the parking lot I felt dismay when I saw the brown, iron gates that had blocked the roads on either side of the fork were now wide open. Since we moved here they had been closed to regular vehicles and only available for snowmobiles in the winter. Since mud season began we had been hiking in our own personal playground: the only souls in sight the trotting elk tails and also tracks from moose, deer, and bear. All that has changed.

We drove down the road we’ve walked a dozen times at least, parking where we normally turn around for our walk. Maybe half of the campsites along side the road had RVs, tents, and one white Subaru with a contorted yoga form we left in a cloud of dust.

Our untried trail claimed to be a loop and we found ourselves at the fence line of houses keeping watch over massive hayfields and the lake. The ancient mountains looked back, keeping watch over them.

The loop met up with the road, Stillwater Pass, and as we approached, two vehicles a few minutes apart passed in different directions. We trekked the gap down the road back to our truck, ready for cars, managing to jump off the road for the last one we met near where we parked. For months we had been alone. I had come to feel as if we were in our own backyard where my only concern was avoiding animals and their babies.

I’ve never been one for change, even though change is the one thing that we can count on. Still, with one ear cocked for ATVs, the other heard birdsong and squirrels. I was surrounded by pines and aspens, brand new flowers, and a vista sparkling with a lake and dripping in melting, snowcapped mountains. It’s just another day in paradise.

Silent Epidemic (#30 NaPoWriMo prompt)

Image result for colorado RMNP beetle kill
NPS photo

We walk among the dead.
Decimated by an epidemic of
Epic proportions.
A literal graveyard.

834 million trees standing, dead.
One in fourteen trees, dead.
Death is a gray haze on a hillside,
Foreshadowing the smoke of future fires.

The physical presence
Merely a symptom
Of the thing we have imagined,
The thing that shall no longer be named.

Temperate temperatures.
Dry warm nights inviting, welcoming
First the mountain pine beetle (3.4 million acres)
Now also the spruce beetle (1.7 million acres).

Admire the blue-stained wood.
Make guitars, snowboards, skis.
Revive biochar.
Carcasses carved and cooked.

Sing songs about the days when
Snow piled under snowboards and skis.
When forests had winters.
When trees could grow.

Image result for colorado RMNP beetle kill
wikipedia

 

Image result for colorado RMNP beetle kill
climatediscovery.org

NaPoWriMo

And for our final (optional) prompt, I’d like you to take your cue from Borges, and write a poem that engages with a strange and fascinating fact. It could be an odd piece of history, an unusual bit of art trivia, or something just plain weird. While I cannot vouch for the actual accuracy of any of the facts presented at the links above (or any other facts you might use as inspiration!), I can tell you that there are definitely some poetic ideas here, just waiting for someone to use them.

The Best Bad Dogs Ever (#29 NaPoWriMo Prompt)

MVIMG_20180427_083633.jpg
Cacophony announcing apocalypse,
Cattle dogs hard at work for the herd.
Ground squirrel, diving for cover while
Tongues lolling, muscles quivering, they wait.

When not pronouncing the end of the world
Their worlds end,
One each pressed to my sides,
Slack abandon in sleep.

This morning I carried my phone to the couch,
Intent on that morning coffee,
My husband in my hands (my heart, my
soul
) on video, pixels of love.

Colorado sunlight glinting off the screen and
BAI YI YI AOURRRRRRRR AY! AY! AY!
Pure fur, pure voice, rigid in attack
Set off by no more than a glimmer.

I look into my husband’s eyes,
Pixel to pixel,
Me muting the phone to save his ears.
Together: “They are the best bad dogs ever.”

mvimg_20180421_222955.jpg

October 4th Plath Poetry Project calendar
Sylvia Plath’s The Arrival of the Bee Box

NaPoWriMo
And now for our daily prompt (optional, as always). Today, we’d like to challenge you to write a poem based on the Plath Poetry Project’s calendar. Simply pick a poem from the calendar, and then write a poem that responds or engages with your chosen Plath poem in some way.