Sometimes I walk too fast. I get caught up in where I’m going. Or just the motion of it. I get distracted by kilometers and minutes. I listen to music. I listen to podcasts. I have imaginary conversations.
Sometimes I remember that I live in a beautiful place and that I probably won’t live here forever. I look at the mountains and the creek. This foreign landscape. I look at the trees. So many of them still ripped open from the flood two years ago. There is one tree that nearly always pulls me out of distraction. Bent like a twig. It is so broken and so beautiful.
The landscape has changed in the last six months. Things are not where they used to be. The stove, for example, is no longer rusting in the creek bed.
And then this. I saw it and kept walking. I stopped and turned around. The natural world plus pen. A way of becoming. Or seeing what is already there.
I am too often leaving home. It happens when the homes are multiple. It’s a numbers game.
Many years ago, I was leaving home, coming home. The leaving was from Australia. The coming to the United States. We were in my parents’ driveway, loading suitcases. And there was this in the sky:
To have a home that floats. A home that travels. Maybe I should be a turtle. Maybe I should be a conch.
Looking up is mainly something I do when I’m somewhere else. Somewhere not home. In Prague, you have to look up for things like this:
It could be hanging on the side of your building. It could be something you almost miss.
Today as I walked along Boulder Creek, there were people looking up. I had forgotten. I was looking at the path. I was concentrating on the ground. But they were looking up, so I looked up too. And there was this:
He was also confused about home. About its borders, about how far and often they could stretch.
I watched for a while, said hello and goodbye, kept walking. On my way back, he was still up there. Just him and animal control. Everyone else had left, maybe been told to leave. I sent a video to my family. To show them how big bears grow here. A koala can hold its own, especially if you get between it and its stash, but they are teddy bear sized. This is different.
Except this bear isn’t getting any bigger. This is as big as a bear is allowed to get if it goes through your rubbish in Boulder and then climbs a tree. I’m glad I looked up today. I’m glad I said hello and goodbye.