"Those were hard things for me to come by, and I offer them to you for what they may be worth." - Toby Wolff

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Alive in Almanor

I heard footsteps.
That small yet distinctive sound of carpet pile
crushed under human weight.

It seemed off,
like a dinner bell at sunrise,
but I easily relegated it to my imagination....
until I heard it again....closer.
And again.
My ears now tuned to the frequency
and my heart beating a path away from the intrusion.

I heard the intake of air, a breath, not mine
and following it
my own gasp
as I wrestled covers and fought the lamp.

I saw no one, yet wide awake
noticed the window
more precisely, the view... 

It was 5:20 AM and the moon was brilliantly large, like the rising sun...
as bright as...seemingly,
and I began to wonder,
who woke me for such splendor?

It was not to be wasted.
I found a coat, size 10
in whose world, I cannot imagine
for it dwarfed me, though the temperature made fashion

And my feet, Converse baring
cold, yet free
hit the pedals of my bike
basket full of cameras

The mist, the lake, the mystery.
I saw no one, yet wide awake.

A parting shot
though as all leavings go
a cycle of emotion
around the inevitable funeral
digging the plotted field in preparation for burial
which gave birth to this...most glorious relic

And exhausting myself with it
a rusty school girl crush, expended in film,
I took my ardor
to a cratered lake
emerald as any jewel

Hiking beyond limits
up towards high contrast
to the Aspens
instruments of the wind
glittering in the sun against the envy of pine

Even fallen, their beauty
assuaged my weary limbs
forehead to stump
I pulled from it the remaining color
once life
now art

only to have it returned
from the fingers of a child
a color wicked with whimsy
as should color be
upon the skin of us
having been wakened
and so fully alive.



  1. My toes...my toes. They remind me of a drag queen somehow. My niece...so proud of her polish and boasting as the best "polisher" in the whole world. I still can't get it off. With good reason I suppose. Who wants to excise the remains of such a day!

  2. Enjoyed the wonderful foray. The photography is fantastic. I especially like the art expressed so wonderfully upon your toes. Accuracy is so over rated.

  3. Wow, Annie, what an AWESOME place! And your words took my breath away as much as the photos. Yes, the Moonlady wakes me every full moon night so I can stand and gaze at her loveliness. She's more beautiful over a lake and in the mist... You are blessed. Love you!! xoxo

  4. Your pictures are poetry. And, I love, love, love the toes!

  5. i love this and every single photograph...excellent little journey away...

  6. It all starts with a footstep. Isn't that what they say: a thousand mile journey starts with a single step? In this case it's music - the sound, the sound of footsteps. Try as you might you can't ignore it; it beckons you; and the journey spoken of begins after all. Thank you, Annie, for taking me along.

  7. Anthony! - "Accuracy is soooo over rated". I love that. And I can hear my neice say it with her drama hands splayed and her little head cocked. And you're right. It is. How many friggin' years has perfection been a goal? Too many, and I fear too many more. Maybe I'll ease up. I just might surprise myself.

    Marion - I wasn't joking about the steps, the breath. Wasn't the first time for such a visitation, but freaks me out every single time. I was so glad though, to have woken to this moon on the lake. Thought of you....of course!!!!

    Liza - Oh, they are such a sight! I am thinking of your relationship, the healing needed, and wishing it so. Wishing you wisdom and vision beyond the pain of now.

    Glenn - Smilin' back at ya.

    EcoGrrl - I think I took well over 300 photos that day. I've yet to even see them all as my computer is so slow. I'm ready to throw it out the window!

    Andreas - One small step for Annie, who just never could ignore the music :)

  8. Annie, I've said before and if I haven't said before, I'll say it twice so I can claim I've said it before.

    You are sadly underpaid.

    I've said this before, see.

    You are sadly underpaid.

    I've known women who had no idea how beautiful they are. I'm not one to take advantage of them, or maybe I am (I'm a man, how can I NOT), but GOD when you find a woman so gorgeous and bliss it's a beautiful thing.

    You're like a record-setting fish who jumps in your boat, a trophy bear dropping dead at your feet, a free lotto ticket with the winning numbers. Get it?

    You have no idea, do you. No idea at all.

    Find a publisher, silly girl. Or I'll find one for you and take half your money!

    - Eric

  9. WOW, I'm in AWE....magical time, stunning photos, you've carried me with you, splendid person that you are

  10. wonderful words and photos

  11. Eric - If you can find someone to publish anything of mine, you can have ALL the money. And please do all the face to face promo work as well. I really want to ghost write someone's lurid and tawdry life story. Okay, it could be a nice story too. And thank you for the compliments (you drinkin'?) I gotta agree...sadly underpaid. Always have been. I'm not the type that can ask for a raise :(

    Lorraine - It's only fair. You've been taking me all over Canada! I wanted to reciprocate.

    Isabel - Thank you so much. Damn it was a fine morning. Colder than all get out. Hard to hold the camera still with all that shivering. But worth it. That mist was really something else.

  12. This is beautifully done ... I love the photos.

    I'm thinking about wabi-sabi now ...

  13. I loved this, Annie. And the toes at the end! OMG, yes, Drag queens do sometimes over do it as your polish. Your toes appeared a bit drunk and missed the lines:). Still, the humor and light heartedness that came as you went along made me laugh at the end. How often I have woken in the night and wondered why, so, I simply got up. Scary to take my camera out where I live, but wish I could. I wonder of your lake.

  14. hello annie, your niece is so extremely cute. to be returned to the fingers of that child is just wonderful.

  15. Matt - Thank you. A short trip. Too short. Aren't they all?

    Amy - My toes are still pained that neon pink. I fear I shall go to my grave with it. Lake Alamanor is a magical place for me. The little town of Chester delights me.

    Oceangirl - I tried to comment on your blog and it wouldn't let me. Our musical tastes are so similar. Stop by and take a song - leave one, on Musically Promiscuous!

  16. what a magical ride. once life now art. not much can make me interested in the world at 5:20 a.m.:) but you did it.

  17. Chuckle. A wonderful mystical journey. I loved "wicked with whimsey" ... Oh, my. Delight.

    You have turned my own ackward painting of toe nails into art! How fun.


Thank you for listening.