Friday, November 26, 2010

Winter in Wyoming

Winter in Wyoming. It's to think about the elements and to marvel at them: I am in awe that you have the power to kill me. The mountains along two-lane highways sit quietly, they breathe softly, heaving. Signs along the road declare entry points to the Overland Trail. The Overland Trail was a stagecoach and wagon route that was an alternative to the Oregon Trail in the early 1800s. Those superhuman ancestors of the West, what do their strong children do now on these prairies that surge into peaks?

At night, in Saratoga, at the Hobo hot springs a man drank milk out of the carton in the steaming pool. He had a paunch and a blonde beard like a Viking. I dreamed his wild-haired progenitors on the flats, trudging stoically in the snowy sea. The next morning small flakes drifted into our room and back at the hot springs they floated into the steam coming off the water and melted mid air. Ice coated thin hairs on exposed body parts and the dusting of icicles on skin made us seem extra fragile, then.

In the woods there were animal tracks. Moose? I kept falling over in the snow shoes and felt my face slowly freeze. The river was frozen, too. L.'s hands froze and he writhed in pain, in the car, as they slowly defrosted. On the drive back to Laramie, everything turned purple.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Expired: Tryin' to be cool and patient

Cold mornings, days that drag, fickle nights. When the hypnic jerks start up, like full body hiccups, I am thankful. More and more I meet people at peace and am reminded of that possibility - ye of thin skin and hard heart, what is the purpose of the shield and devotion if it is wasted on barren trees and self defense? Instead, I'd like to ride away on elephants, wild horses with accessible manes, independent beasts that soothe with just their regality and perfectly muscled hearts.

Things that wake me (metaphorically): cars that won't start, hoarse laughter (ha!), creaking doors, fallen leaves, rustling of any sort, unsure stares, waiting, waiting, wheelbarrows and bathtubs, indecipherable compliments ("nice elbows, girl"), blunt objects, steely skies.

When I was a child I thought I was in love with a man who wore a gold eagle around his neck. He looked like an outlaw but he was just a hooligan. Sometimes I still feel that he is the original and best and glinting eagles catch my eye like mirrors across mountains. To distract myself (to look for him?) I commit petty crimes (would you say they are not petty?).

What I like about Julio Cortazar is that he writes about nothing and one always feels that he speaks directly to you (about nothing).

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Me, My Car and Buffalo.

Mostly, my room. I've outfitted it with many patterned surface coverings and a buffalo missing three feet with a lighting bolt in his head. He came from Lander, where a Turkish man looked on solemnly as I put him in my car. So then sometimes, I leave. Clyde, my car, accelerates slowly up winding roads and rumbles on in the winds of the open plains where the setting sun looks like the buried tonsil of a throat enclosed by sky and land. When I drive here, fast, I mostly fantasize about things that will never be; the improbability of the openness, the dark shadows of clouds on scoured lands, the stripes of mineral that I squint at to verify, all lend themselves to wandering thoughts, to wandering eyes, to wandering. Sometimes I check my pulse - I think its always the same (under control?) but I forget to count. That's a good sign.