Thursday, October 7, 2010

Strange Day on the Road

lovely start
a few miles west
took turn off
for Turtle River State Park

beautiful, quiet place
nobody there
no campers

soft morning light
on the rushes
surrounding a little lake
flocks of Canadian geese
flying low in formation
and landing

sunning themselves

red sumac
along the road
picture perfect
didn't want to leave

talked with Park Ranger
soon they'll close the park
for the winter
only a few stragglers now
none last night

he tells me some boy scouts
are coming for the day
he'll teach them
the ecology of the place

I ask him about wind
which he says is fierce
especially in winter and spring

I ask him about wind generators
he says it's growing in the state
but not self-sustaining yet
supported by a wind-power sur-charge
on electric bills
(later I am awed
seeing a whole ridge
rimmed with white giants
turning slowly
collecting the power of wind)

oil's the thing he says
in fact if I'm headed west
which I am
he says I may not find
a place for the night

all hotels and motels
are filled by oil rig workers
and pipe line builders

I make calls at the next town
he's right
none of the less expensive places
have a vacancy

I make a reservation at a place
that's way over my budget
taking the last available room
glad for his warning
glad to know
I won't have to sleep in my car

the day drones on
a little boring
although I'm listening to
The Big Book
(Alcoholics Anonymous)
on my CD player

I am surprised how much
I learn
how much I like this book
how much sense it makes

although written in 1935
it feels very current
maybe it's because
truth is not bound by time

it holds my interest
relevant to my past as a drinker
my whole life as an overeater
and my recent recovery process

I had a bad fall today
walking around the side
of a gas station
a deep divot in the road
caught my foot
sending me reeling
and tumbling
onto the pavement

makes me think of Mom
of how often she fell
in her later years
and how each fall
cost her dearly

a little lunch
at the Frontier Cafe
and two aleeve
helped with the aches

after that
came the oil rigs
big, tall, powerful, mean-looking
oil rigs
and the more standard types
little ducks
bobbing their yellow heads

farmers plowing their fields
farmers cutting and bailing
the grass
dairy cows and salt licks

and right next to them
another oil rig
or a ditch ready for pipes
to be laid

oil and farm
oil rig workers
and farmers

is there conflict
how could there not
be hard feelings

the noise
heavy trucks
the rigs dominating
the horizons
wouldn't the farmers
resent them

beauty, peace and recovery
in the morning
gradually shifting
to disrupted nature and conflict
as I traveled westward


  1. I hope you are okay and not too sore!

  2. This TOTALLY moved me..I agree truth is timeless.

  3. You paint such an evocotive picture. I really enjoy seeing your journey through your words. I would like to have been in Turtle River State Park on such a morning.

    We visit the Netherlands at least once a year. There is an increasing number of wind terbines there. I hear a lot of people complain that they are an eyesore. I find them magestic.

    I too have been travelling this past week to the Bay of Naples in Italy so I am catching up with your journey today. I hope you enjoyed the time you had with your Mum. I live very close to my parents. Just this week away has been difficult and I know that they miss me terribly. I usually only see them once a week but it is knowing that I am only 10-15 minutes away if they need me.

    Very mixed feelings for you reading the past few entries but most overriding is my admiration of your strength, your honesty and the beauty of your sole.

  4. Mixed feelings, yin/yang, conundrums, paradoxes, trips, falls, baby steps -- these are the ways of the world, like it or not.

    Congratulations on walking your walk, talking your talk, and being honest with yourself and others. It's called integrity, and you certainly seem to have a good dose of it!

    When you get back home, ask me about Joe & Charlie. They were friends of Bill, too. I have some of their tapes on stepwork from an OA conference. --DB

  5. Your blog is so aptly named....
    You really do paint with words...
    Thanks for this wonderful post.


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