Today I am grateful for abundant shade trees, cool water from a deep well and an
afternoon breeze that took a bit of the edge off the heat wave. The elevation of the
hills here kept the temperature well under the one hundred degree mark, but others
I spoke with were not so lucky. I was thankful it wasn't hotter, I tend to melt in heat
and humidity. Pasha and I both moved around from shady spot to shady spot, me
attempting chores in between long sits under the trees sipping lemon verbena and
chocolate mint water. It would have been a wonderful day to go to Glendale Falls,
but, alas, that was last weekends journey.
The hills here are often nothing more than mounds of ledge covered in a wee bit
of soil. Stones and ledges peek up everywhere, whispering their ancient earth
stories. Glendale Falls starts as a small tributary brook with a lovely pool at the top,
then cascades down in a series of falls and pools to the bottom. In spring it is quite
a rushing waterfall, but this time of year the pools are fed by small streams providing
many a wonderful swimming hole.
The pool at the top is deceptively deep, below, a fellow wanderer stepped into
the deepest part to have a real swim. There is a spot for a whirlpool massage as
well, as long as you don't mind an occasional small fish dancing in your hair.
One can climb down the smooth ledges from pool to pool, or walk beside the
falls in the forest. The way down is often a stone path with hundreds of tree
roots holding on for lack of deep soil.
Walking slowly between roots and stone, a magical moment of light captures me.
Small streams and pools sing gentle forest songs,
and everywhere the trees seem quite able to pull up
their roots and join me as I wander.
Two trees reach for each other, perched together
for a hundred years or more, holding root-hands
at the edge of the waterfall.
Scarred and knobbed, this broken root healed into
something that looks rather like the eye of a tree. Or
maybe a giant, green dragon once met a great sorcerer
and was changed forever into tree.
Small springs sprout from stone and moss and tree, and
I find myself walking further into the forest and away
from the people scrambling quickly down the
waterfall to see what is at the bottom. I am reminded
of the importance of the slow, meandering path.
I come upon a woodland cave, cool and dark and deep, and
know this place must be a favorite of bobcat and mountain lion,
once the humans have departed and the darkening forest
belongs again to the wilder ones.
As I look more closely at the pair of reaching trees,
I see tree spirits peering at me. I could feel them
here in this forest, and now I know they saw