Submitted march 2014
Springtime in the Mountains North of Santa Fe
Well, I went up there and it didn’t look like what I wanted. There was still snow even before the trailhead. We had to stop way before and get out and walk. Made it to the trailhead and couldn’t see that pointy peak that would peek out at me every now and then as I walked. Very enclosed. Disappointed we started walking back and I just stopped. Wait a minute this is a very special blaze, no where else, probably, do the borders come together at a point forming a corner which just so happens is also a trailhead. You gonna throw your ideas on that to the wind, I told myself. My son asked me what I was doing and then I told everyone to come back. We went and stood at the trailhead and I said. “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze, look quickly down, your quest to cease”. Everyone looked at the stream before us.
I jumped to the last stanza and said, “Now hear me all and listen good, your effort will be worth the cold.” We continued to stare at the stream. “If you are brave and in the wood, I give you title to the gold”. Our line of vision traveled from the stream to the densely forested area sandwiched in a little hollow where the stream came forth. My son cried, “It’s in the wood and rushed forward. Everyone else also ran forward as well. A couple of seconds later we were post holing it past our knees. Laughter ensued as shoes came off in the drift and bodies fell this way and that. Not my son though as he trudged forward. Although no one had realized how deep the snow was there he didn’t miss a lick, his balance completely intact. He rounded a corner where the bank jutted out obstructing our view. Calling forth for us to follow in his footsteps, he waited for us to catch up. The others made it to him but I waited to see what they would find. The snow was too much for the majority of our party and it wasn’t long before they had scaled the bank up to the trail. My son lingered at the stream. I decided to climb the bank also as I wasn’t keen on twisting an ankle in the deep snow. Laughing and chattering, my daughter and her two friends became intensely interested in a huge evergreen high up the slope with a vibrantly red colored trunk stating that excitedly that she thinks she found the place. The voices of the others faded somewhat as they moved away from me. I was still waiting for my son to come up to the trail. He eventually did with a confused look on his face. You should come down there he told me. But the day had been long and the walk back was going to take time. I noticed the sun had hit the western ridge and darkness would be a reality soon. It had been a beautiful day, warm even despite the snow. I could hear the voices of the others again as they drew near.
My son whispered something to me. I looked at him. He whispered louder, “It was coming right out of the rocks.” I wonder if he saw that right. “We can’t go down, I don’t want to get caught out here after dark.” We started back making our way over the frozen road. I kept stopping and making people take pictures with their phones. I don’t have one, a phone that is. Pictures of the snowy bank sprinkled with evergreens. Pictures of the creek running swift and clear with snow mounds caressing its sides. Everyone noticed how nice it was up here. The shadows grew longer as we walked with our car finally coming into view. My son told me, “ We need to come back. It reminded me of something in the 13th warrior.” He has my interest now but it’s too late for today. I will have to return another day.