Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Next Poem in the Ongoing Series About the Autumn of 2005

October 24, 2005
Vanessa’s birthday weekend trip to cabin in Freestone

Had a moment alone with Bill out on the deck
overlooking the valley early one morning
the hills the color we in California call gold
dotted with trees so dark green they’re nearly black
We talked about two trees nearer to hand
one tall narrow and silvery with just a few fluttering yellow leaves
the other great and sprawling all covered in pale green moss
I liked these trees very much
I’d been looking at them all weekend
yet I found I had a hard time letting them in
or going out towards them
or meeting them in the middle
As though my eye kept sliding off them
as though they were slippery
Though of course they were standing right there
And we talked about what do you see when you see?
what do you look for?
And I said solidity, bulk, mass, reality existing outside my body, thing-y-ness
And Bill said light and shadow
And with that I saw the trees all over again

Later we took a walk
and saw a deer and poison oak
sunlight streaming in an almost absurdly picturesque way
wild turkeys that look like dinosaurs
and the golden hill grasses up close
all lying down flat in different directions side by side

A trip to the bakery
with all the bread stacked up in a mound
and the smell and the heat and the bustle and the taste
and then a walk in the vegetable garden behind the bakery
with zinnias planted among the tomatoes
a blue wheelbarrow full of little round gourds like pumpkins
half dark green and half off-white
and a visit to some pretty clean chickens, bunnies, and goats

Star-gazing on the deck on Saturday night
layers upon layers of stars you don’t see in the city
the bigness of the universe making me feel small and lucky as it always does
I mean what are the odds?
I exist at all
and I get to wear cashmere sweaters

And the food
tart and salad for dinner
Vanessa’s big breakfast
bread and cheese and wine
great mac and cheese
with Bill’s pumpkin pie for dessert
How other people’s food is different from your own
not just what they cook or even how they cook it
but how it tastes
The distinct overall flavor profile unique to the hands of any given cook
that makes her eggs taste more like her pasta
than her eggs taste like my eggs

image source is here

No comments:

Post a Comment