Fragments composed on Beacon Rock trail, First of March;
Where, if you stopped to listen, the trees made sounds like birds and squeaky doors,
Where the wind vibrated the strings of the trees to make the sound of trains receding into the distance,
Where the trains receding into the distance made the sounds of avalanches and helicopters.
The rough feel of rocks was like the dust and smoke in the air, which gave everything an understated glow;
Trees made windowpanes, needles curtains, framing the view,
Looking at the sun shining, low to the horizon, realizing that it had been there every day since birth but that it is forever too bright and too beautiful to see.
A desiccated brown river of dirt cut through the green to the horizon, parallel to the river, looking like the great wall as seen from satellites; a swath populated by steel trees radiating buzzing cancer.
Walking home afraid in the roar of charging cars, I stepped across a pile of bleached white bones and trash,
And the lonely snout of a daffodil cowered in the lee of a small boulder.
* * *
When Western Civilization collapses suddenly, I will liberate tools and trudge daily up this trail, removing the guardrails. I will replace the sturdy wooden platforms with rope bridges. I will stand on the top of the rock and look out at the crumbling dam and the fallen electrical towers and the river once again flowing freely. And I will feel the danger of the wind again.