Oregon Trail (Final Miles)

That’s how we meet. You won’t meet me halfway. I will see you somehow in the currents you heave at the sky to travel grey, and scatter before the Cascades. Continuing against the grain, I will catch your fresh scent, distinct in things like air-salted patches of salmonberries, pronounced and sweetened by deep-soaked duff, timeless, newborn and dying as the rivers you breath to your being, and I with them.

My steady pace will slow as I hear you: a rush meant to blend with the wind as I turn my ear to listen, to pick out your voice, natural and fragile as a heartbeat, grand and intangible as what you are.

Below that final overhang, which you carved in waiting,  you break on the shore. You, the endless Pacific,  unraveling me in your depth and moving me at your surface. Attracted at once by a song in your gale, and the rhythm in your swell, but drawn further without bearing to your endless horizon – a balm to uncertainty and the calluses on the soles of my patience, which I bore willingly to find you.

Someday, other currents could beckon. We’d give eachother up, and the only signs I’d remember would be the trees on the coast, naked at your face, limbs pointing back inland; but then, that drew me in, as did a lively, drenching cold, the tropic warmth you hide, and mystery the continents are shamed by.

18 thoughts on “Oregon Trail (Final Miles)

    1. Thanks, Karen. The drawing is a computer-enhanced (or degraded) fragment of a larger drawing, which I will probably post at some time. It was an abstract landscape made by drawing and erasing the figure. Thanks for noticing the over-haul, it took me a while to get it right.

  1. James, I really like your new look as well. And I love this piece of writing with the drawing that complements it perfectly. This particular phrase really stood out for me: “calluses on the soles of my patience” – awesome. Really enjoyed reading this. ~ Julie 🙂

  2. I’ve read this several times and each time I read it the meaning became deeper and the words more beautiful. I’m looking forward to seeing the complete drawing. Don’t keep us waiting too long!

  3. This is a great prose poem about the power of the Pacific, and I, too, like the abstract drawing. Both the poem and the drawing dig deep into the beauty and power of the shore and sea near the mountains. Excellent work.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s