The Path of Water

We measure seasons by the shape of water.

From dew to frost, from rain to snow,

Water travels through the year-

A chameleon marker of time,

Of passing days and relentless progress.

The weight of water is carefully measured.

Small trickles of rain or snow or dew

Gradually etch their presence into buildings,

Into trees and stone.

You would think the metal would survive,

But after forty years, it is the trees and grass that bear

The yoke-

All previous signs of humanity ground

Into mossy debris.

Look out at the lawn and the delicate lacing-

Power is not force,

But persistence.

IMG_0255Few forces as powerful or delicate as the expanding water burrowing to the ground

Slow change is an amazing force to watch.


For forces delicate and otherwise, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here. Its sequel, With Honor Intact, can be found here.

 

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Picture Perfect

The local plants lose their leaves instantly.

One day, still clinging fiercely to the last of the light,

The next, brown and barren, frozen until the return of warmth.

The true fall here is a brief stepping stone on the way to winter.

If it is a kaleidoscope of colours, it is a kaleidoscope of brown and cold and ominous hibernation.

The riot of leaves, of red and gold and photo opportunities-

They aren’t from here.

They come from elsewhere,

A nostalgic memory of other places, other autumns.

Those bold, bright colours live until-

The set of rot, the frost that catches them out, the True Winter.

There are always more people from elsewhere though

Ready to plant their memories

Picture perfect and already dead.

IMG_0285Beautiful and transient reminders of other worlds

Nostalgia is a powerful and fascinating force.


For clashes with the past, nostalgic and otherwise, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here. Its sequel, With Honor Intact, can be found here.

A Fine Line

Most roads up here still aren’t paved.

Get off the highway, get off the safe roads in the middle of town and you hit-

Gravel, mud, corduroy logging roads, long since de-activated.

Roads are political.

Maintenance happens when industry booms, when an election’s coming, when someone remembers that the map has a northern half.

To drive most of the year is to navigate the barriers between the lands that are considered important-

-and the lands that are ceded back to the wild.

You can forget sometimes, if you travel only between the larger towns, if you live within sight of lights at night,

How thin the line between control and chaos actually is.

It is harder when your drive takes you through the end of the pavement,

And you realize how thin those arteries are,

How narrow the webs between points of civilization,

As the slow steady path of growing seedlings slowly bars

The forgotten passage.

IMG_0244The trees eventually reclaim their own

A theme I return to is the precarious balance on the edges of human construction.


For more edge balancing, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here. Its sequel, With Honor Intact, can be found here.

That Which Leaves

There are days when it doesn’t rain.

As the moon swells, the clouds slowly part.

On the ripest moment of the moon’s harvest,

The air is clear-

And cold.

The clouds hide and hold the last of the warmth,

And once the cold arrives, it stays.

It hides in the ground, in frostwork lattices,

In half-frozen creeks and fully frozen ponds.

And because out in the mountains, the forests,

As one season advances, the other must retreat,

So too do the birds, the animals,

Those things that move and those that don’t.

The turning of the leaves of the cottonwood

-Is always prelude to the main act,

And when the morning rises to gold

And not green-

Best to taste the air and gather warmth,

Bow to the sharp fingers of winter slowly reaching

For the fleeing sun.

IMG_0192The shadows stretch longer as the light fades and the leaves turn

Dramatic and fast change is a certainty when living in the North.


For more dramatic and fast changes, my fantasy novel, The Guests of Honor, is available here. Its sequel, With Honor Intact, can be found here.