Myself, my wife, and friend David Leff at the Artists' Cooperative in Westerly, Rhode Island, just before we gave a poetry reading. Here's one of the poems I read that day.
The Long Grey Trail
Legs pounding, feet slapping against grey rock,
Hard muscles straining up cold, grueling slopes,
We follow green, breadloaf mountain ridges,
Through days of biting flies and spiteful rain,
Until our backs bend beneath the burden,
Lean flesh steaming in the simmering sun.
What force pushes us past hunger and pain,
Past endless trees, icy mist, wind and thirst,
Past oceans of boulders and nightmare peaks?
This strange strength forces us to moments when,
With pure hearts, empty heads, and leathered skin,
We hope to touch the real, fight the long sleep,
And share a feast with old friends and strangers
At the silvery end of the long grey trail.