Rain falls steadily, washing trees,
readying them for winter.
Leaves cover the earth-bed
in multi-colored quilts.
When grey sky-drapes lift,
the mountain horizon opens.
Seasons turn over a new leaf,
so slowly, so surely,
as imperceptible as the changes
Time imprints on our lives.
Sitting on the time worn smoothness
of river rock, I listen to the hurried waters,
the slaps, claps, splashes of dancing
white caps with no real cares about
what life drops in their path; running
streams circumvent logs and boulders
making an alphabet of turns; life
racing ahead, meeting challenges
with a fervor of determination.
Movement slows around the bend,
peaceful ambling, no angst about
stirring winds, approaching downpours,
or rivulets running off mountain slopes.
Still waters collect in reflecting pools
gathering shapes of present moments
– trees, clouds, mountain ridges, nodding
heads of goldenrod and Joe-pye weed,
pauses that sooth, restore, revive.
Lingering on the edge, I am drawn into
back and forth bantering of tales being told,
each water droplet an ancient traveler
journeying to its point of origin, sharing
with passers-by the notions of paths traversed
and landscapes changed across millennia.
who else has stood in this place pondering
the power of origin and transformation?
Trees took their time dressing in variations
of spring green until seemingly with a single
swipe of Nature’s wand, whether midnight,
noon or early morn, I do not know, buxom
beeches, cherries, oaks and maples
flaunted their arrival, exchanging high fives.
Folks who grew up in these mountains
cautioned – two colds snaps yet to come.
As sure as their word would have it,
in mid-April dogwood winter dropped-in
and a profusion of pink and white cross
shaped petals hailed its departure.
Just as April showers seeped into May
the second freeze chilled the nights.
Days after Blackberry Winter wrapped
up a long weekend visit, delicate white
flowers popped up on roadside vines .
We marked the ways of the local lore waiting
for Mother’s day to scatter pollinator seed
on the sun rich hillside where day lilies
yearn for summer and greet the newly
planted purple cone flowers and red salvia .
Pots of bright red impatiens hang on the porch,
inviting hummingbirds but not the bears.
The fragrance of honeysuckle blending
with boxwood announces with full
assurance that summer is coming.