Copper Mountain River Adventure: An Epic: Part Two
by Erin Elizabeth Kelly-Moen
Saturday, July 22, 2006
Not rated by the Author.
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Desert rivers are beautiful entities, contained in wide sweeps
Of sand and rock, harboring brush and small trees. We walked,
With difficulty, over a landscape of variable sizes and compositions
Of rock, with sandy sediment strewn here and there, creating highways
Of lizard tails, javelina hooves and bird tracks. We decided to head for a line
Of giant cottonwoods guarding a wash. Ah, the shade was breath reviving! Eerily
With The gnarly limbs of the mighty trees grotesquely garnered with
Parasitic mistletoe, themselves gorgeous in their hanging greenery. We
Walked the length back down to the river, marveling at tree-tortured forms,
Shaped by circumstances of growth, heat, storms and happenstance. The
River’s bend was full of sucky-mud, so we headed back up the wash, to the road.
We detoured, once, to look over a knoll, and saw an older black calf
In a shallow, looking at us. Cattle feed along the river, as well as most
Of Arizona’s open range. We backed away, and continued on our way.
With the Tahoe in view, a large black and white female cow came out
Of the brush, heading for us! She wasn’t running, was probably just
Curious, but it was a little unsettling, and we freaked! Started running,
Ourselves, like in a bad Sci-Fi movie, very surreal and scary, cows
Are big! We were laughing, the cow was coming and the calf clambered
Over a small sand hill, and joined the ‘chase’! We made it to the Tahoe,
And jumped inside. Just in time! A mining truck came lumbering down
The road, but hadn’t seen our ignoble, embarassing retreat...
He made the crossing through the river I had been wondering was passable,
So we followed, after a few minutes regaining our composure. The cattle
Moved on, never knowing our dread. I put the Tahoe in four-wheel drive,
And we crossed, followed the road a short way and came to a fork, started
Up the higher road but had to stop, there was a No Trespassing sign, so we
Went to the dead-ended right fork, and, again, found Nirvana! On a small
Height, where the silt-strewing river was displayed magnificently below our feet,
And, under a Kingly cottonwood, we placed our cooler and our chairs, albeit
Among some other people’s trash, a few beer bottles, a soda can and cow piles
Abounding with seeds in their dried up mass, but we settled in, nicely. I had
Forgotten the camera, and cursed myself roundly throughout the trip!
I did draw a picture of our view, after we had lounged about, eating our picnic
And lazily observing cardinals, orioles and tanagers colorfully dipping
Through trees and river breezes. Only, this new composition book has a
Purple cover, and the subject dividers are purple, too, and I drew the picture
In mechanical pencil lead. It didn’t copy well, or scan, I wish you could see it,
It depicts the lay of desert river land. The day started feeling like I’d hoped it would,
Me and my daughter comfortable in each other’s presence, making small talk
While communing with selves, loving the feel of Nature’s sights, smells and sounds.
Then, the Phelps Dodge truck came back down the upper road, I ‘helloed’
When the man got out to shut and lock the single iron gate and asked him why he’d
Been up that way, he said he was checking the water pumps, as he’d done for years,
Near ‘the old house’.
Erin Elizabeth Kelly-Moen
© Copyright 7/21/06
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|Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner
|Who needs a camera when the scenery comes alive in the reader's mind? This is poetry at its absolute finest; well done! Thank you for allowing me to tag along on your grand adventure. Enjoyed very much, Erin!
(((HUGS))) and love, Karla.
|Reviewed by Ed Matlack
|If you have a digital camera maybe you can take a picture of the picture you drew...beyond that no one needs any real pics, as the imagery you put forth in this story makes it hard NOT to imagine what you are seeing...even for those us who have never seen a desert, let alone a desert river...thanks for the grins as well, regards the black and white female cow...;) Ed & Rufuz|