out this morning for a walk in the high mountains…with this beside me as I went.
she turned to look me square in the eye…
“you best be going off on this road”
and pointing to the map, there sitting in my lap
why, this is the story she sowed…
“turn right at the sign of the dead raccoon
and follow this road that is long
and sing that old Irish anthem you sing
and you’ll be there ‘fore you finish that song.”
so i took my map and i took up my keys
and i traced long the red road divide
and up and down this ol’ car went round
to the top of Potts Mountain side.
but the car it was shaking as i kept up my snaking
round and round- oh she went
till the car was baking and i felt like breaking
as my nerves like gunshells were spent
till the top i saw and the sound of the caw
of a crow of some gigantic size
let me know i was there sitting hard in my chair
with a breather ‘fore descending that rise
so i prayed a couple prayers, and i prayed i would not fall
and i turned the car to descend
wiggling around as the bends go slowly down
till at last coming to a great mighty bend
there that old road slipped down into town
and the sign said i had made it to the West
so i slowed down a tad, seeing it was so bad
with a side full of potholes at best
till down on the plain as i sped up again
i found that the road broke in two
so i noticed the right opening up straight
and i drove on the road that was blue
it was there on the map, a mighty blue line
unlike that old red one i’d found
and this narrow trail always had a guardrail
not a thousand foot fall to the ground.
this is for the great masses who enjoy diverse forms of poetry. i confess to not being very talented at formulaic verse, since my passion to write is more iconoclastic…preferring poetic fiction, poetic prose, and subject matter inspired by subject or character rather than form. still, i did promise to write some specifically structured verse while http://www.kirstenuninterrupted.wordpress.com – and others- participate in a particular “poetry month.”
i have chosen to write a quintet, a poem containing stanzas or an entire poem of five lines. since i am in no way English, i decided to title this type “Mountain,” as in “Mountaineer,” as in “one from West Virginia.”
(On a trail near Bear Heaven, West Virginia)
MOUNTAIN QUINTET # 1
the red roads round the map of state
and cross the deep divides of form…
splattered with pockets of pea-green paint
lands over which boots and backpacks reign
land of the rhododendron domain.
(typical mountain foliage)
(Bear Heaven, West Virginia)
(Kumbrabow State Forest, West Virginia)
it is not for the faint of heart to travel some of the more rugged and remote roads of West Virginia…but so many are waiting for you and I…to travel down that corridor…into wild and wonderful mountain landscapes, with surprises and photo-op views around nearly every bend…
and the journey becomes as adventurous as where you plan to go for the night….or day…
like Helvetia, this wonderful Swiss-American settlement deep in the high mountains…or this rugged rural road that travels through high mountain forests, passing historic sites, and giving such wonderful scenic views...
…and this…at Bear Rocks in Dolly Sods...
where you can climb up to what seems like the top and see this from your car window…or go explore the wilderness…
…dreaming of spring…slan go foill…
in the foggy mountain dew
in the taste of a mourn
slipping between the heather
like clouds between the sun.
choked upon as mentioned
hindsight years ago
now among the climbers
cheeks and tears aglow.
we will part from the past
upon these upward trail gashes
those tales beneath our boots
digging deeper in the fastness.
and all along the mountainside
her flowers weave more wonders
how can I sweep in panoramas
without putting the past asunder?
After reading a recent post online, I thought of this place…one of the most peaceful places I can remember…well, with the caveat that it was also in bear country, near wild huckleberries, a treat for bears.
But I did not encounter bears, I encountered this. I can imagine a region in Heaven being like this- a place so magnificent, so relaxing, you have to sit down and drink it all in…which is what I did here.
Today I met two frenchman and a french woman at a convenience store. They were outside, huddled over a map of West-By-God-Virginia, while I stared up at the rocky crown of Snowshoe’s neighboring mountain. (Snowshoe is a famous ski resort) The gentlemen were staring so fiercely at the map, machine-gun-rattling french, that I assumed they must be confused or lost. I was wrong.
But I did not want them to feel lost. Maybe you have been a stranger in a strange land- I have, and it is sometimes frustrating. I had been inside the store and watched the clerk try to speak with them en francais, but no avail. I felt like helping, but realized my french has nearly disappeared from memory. I am a bit sad, because french is such a fun language to speak.
I returned home to find a blog visit from France. It must be French in West Virginia Day. I am celebrating with the only pseudo-french item in my house- a generous helping of Leseur petit peas, sauteed in rich kerrygold butter. Magnifique!
So- to all you francophiles, I wish you bonne soir (and hopefully I didn’t get it mixed up with Portugese, Hititite, or Romulan- so it does read “Good evening.”)
And now for something so different, so amazingly useful…that you will never ever get writer’s block ever ever again!
Ten Ways to Defeat The Evil “Writer’s Block:”
10. Step away from the laptop. Next, put on some “outdoor clothes,” get your keys, and go out to the car or truck. Open the door. start the vehicle. Drive. Do not plan on where you are going (take a cooler and any emergency essentials, of course). See where you go. The world outside is an open book, full of characters, action, settings…
9. Again, step away from the computer. Pick one of your characters from your story. Now, go through your clothes and try to find something this character would wear. Find the character’s ideal outfit from your “collection.” You should be able to get a better picture of the character. This should help you to write. It may also help you find clothes to give away.
8. Get out all your old printed pictures (photos). Look at how scrawny or beastly you were years ago. Then, go look in the mirror. Go back and write. Tell me if this actually works.
7. Eat a plate full of raw broccoli. It will move you to…to do something, at least.
6. Watch a horrible movie- with really bad acting. When finished, reflect on it. If you don’t find yourself thinking “I can write a whole lot better than that,” then you need to just…go back to being a mathematician, chemist, or sheetrock worker.
5. (Males) Put on a classy black or grey suit (preferrably Italian), go next door (or down the road) and knock on your closest neighbor’s door. Ask your neighbor to tango…on the wood deck, the patio, the parking lot, or in front of the police station. Well, maybe not the last one. 🙂 (Females) Open the door for the guy in the suit. Make sure you are not across from the police station.
4. Go bowling by yourself. Pretend you are bowling against “Fred The Magic Dog.” When someone asks you where your partner is, respond by saying “Oh, he’s over there- he has a cloaking device.” After that, I am SURE you will have something to write about…when you eventually get home….
3. Stimulate your brain by listening to the classics- Beethoven, Bach, Couperin, Davy, the Monkees, and Tub Ring singing “Bite the Wax Tadpole.”
2. Eat carrots. Drink carrot juice. Wear orange. Pretend you are a Giant Carrot invading your story setting. If this doesn’t help the plot, start a children’s story.
1. Go climb a mountain naked. Best thing to cure you of anything crazy.
i have a headache the size of a mountain this evening…and it does not come from scaling heights to glimpse a fantastic view, like this one above Lost River, deep in Nowhere, West Virginia. No, it is a problematic headache, the kind that Jacob had before he wrestled with the angel, or the kind that Moses had as he looked up at the peak they called “the mountain of God.” I admit, sometimes in this walk of faith, I feel like a Sontaran in a candy shop- not quite knowing how to respond tactically to something that currently makes no logical sense. Still, I cling to what has always worked- to wait expectantly for the Lord…as He is the God of my salvation. (Micah 7:7)
This picture- from the past- reminds me of the time I climbed this mountain- not alone then. It reminds me that people, in their selfishness, can choose the wrong road, the wrong mountain height, only to find themselves so waylaid and so far from home. I do not want to go there…so I will continue to trust in the Lord, even when my thoughts are so much smaller than those of the Lord.