Monday, July 11, 2016

a walk with words

yesterday i went up to niquette bay state park. i felt it was a good day to get some exercise of the foot travel variety, and i had read on the vermont state parks blog that they have this poetry walk.

between the park manager, lisa liotta, and the burnham library's adult services librarian peggy cunningham, they managed to put together a lovely journey across the landscape and with thought.

all i really wanted out of that was an excuse to get a little exercise and i like poetry, so i grabbed my junior naturalist bag and off i went.

i do not think i was prepared, mentally, for the journey. i remember struggling to read some of the fine print, trying hard not to be paying attention to things other than THIS POEM HERE while i was reading each poem, but there were so many things to look at.

at one point late in the journey i was standing concentrating on THIS POEM and i was NOT going to look at that distracting thing over there, but the distracting thing was so close and so red. ok, distracting thing, i will look at you.

the distracting thing was an unusually low-perched scarlet tanager. and then as if to drive his point home, this little guy dropped down and landed right next to my right foot. on the ground. and then after a while he went up to a more eye-level branch where he and his girl continued to look at me for a while.

one thing at a time.

some of the poems kind of beg to be read out loud. not all, but i did read them out loud, just in case. you can't always tell from just looking.

at the far end of the walk is a box like the ones they put trail register books in. only it has a nice good quality heavy-papered journal and some pens and a box of good colored pencils. i don't know whose idea it was not to go on the cheap, but it's really sweet to have so much to see and think and move my body and also a little arts project!

i sat for a long time and worked on a little sketch. i never did see the black throated blue warbler that seemed to be just above my head the whole time.

and the ranger knows her park well. they have posted robert frost's the oven bird at the one place where an ovenbird sang relentlessly. it's not like it was the only ovenbird in the park, but it was the one closest to the trail and the one whose location was easiest to pinpoint.

a little library of field guides

mondrian insect hotel

Desmodium glutinosum

the long road

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