I wrote this poem during my first fall in Oregon. It was inspired by the 10-mile drive from town to my home along Highway 47, one of many roads here that takes my breath away.
If I drive off the road of life
know I was distracted by the wilderness
gazing for a moment at gilded leaves
arched against jagged boughs of evergreen.
Perhaps I beheld a quilted river
of fallen crimson and vermillion
winding along the roadside
vine maples blazing in random rays of sun.
Had I gazed into the weave and texture of leaves
layers interlaced, sharp and dense against the sky?
Or the rain glistening, black branches of the forest bending
silhouetted by canopies of countless green.
Did I glimpse dry fields of weeds,
browning blades and flyaway seeds
the river meandering, my roadside companion
a tapestry of quiet color before me?
If I soar off the road of life
and fail to rise
know that I drove distracted by the wilderness
and my eyes brimmed with beauty.
Just a note that Catling’s Bane is free today until the 29th.