Poetry in the mountains
Some photos from our weekend in the Cascades. I was reciting Frost and Eliot in my head, remembering another hike long ago with friends Kelly and Allegra and Rob and Allegra’s friend: 10 miles from Muir Woods to Stinson Beach and back, where Kelly and I tried to recite Eliot and Wordsworth and other poems to each other as we walked under the redwoods.
Vermont, you always have my heart, but Washington also speaks to my spirit.
Mountains are giant, restful, absorbent. You can heave your spirit into a mountain, and the mountain will keep it, folded, and not throw it back as creeks will. The creeks are all the world with all its stimulus and beauty; I live there. But the mountains are home.
–Annie Dillard, from Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
Landscapes: New Hampshire
Children’s voices in the orchard
Between the blossom- and the fruit-time:
Golden head, crimson head,
Between the green tip and the root.
Black wing, brown wing, hover over;
Twenty years and the spring is over;
To-day grieves, to-morrow grieves,
Cover me over, light-in-leaves;
Golden head, black wing,
Swing up into the apple-tree.
(I know this one is about spring, not fall, but I love the line “Cover me over, light-in-leaves”–sunlight through leaves is one of the most beautiful things I have seen.)
Nothing Gold Can Stay
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.