Winter Morning

Alexander Pushkin's "Winter Morning," excerpt:

Cold frost and sunshine: day of wonder!  
But you, my friend, are still in slumber - 
Wake up, my beauty, time belies: 
You dormant eyes, I beg you, broaden 
Toward the northerly Aurora, 
As though a northern star arise!

Why am I always quoting Pushkin even though he's not my favorite? Truth is, much of his poetry has been translated surprisingly well from the original Russian, which means less work for me! That said, his Nature-related texts do possess an impressive level of accuracy that could only be appreciated.

The Woods (Mobile), I

I am in the woods.

I am in the woods with no electricity or running water after dark. That alone makes this worth experiencing.

Of course, we are in a cabin, and our devices are charged. Yet I feel like I've taken a small step into the kind of a sustainable world that I've been reading about, even if only for a weekend.

I dislike that term, "sustainable," because it is overused by urban bureaucrats who have not even set foot in a place like this.

It IS accurate.

So is "survivalist," though the latter generates nightmarish visions in the minds of gated suburbanites featuring bearded men in "lumberjack" shirts with hunting rifles, who, gasp!, obtain their own food, rather than relying on factory-farmed, overprocessed "mystery meat."

After the generators were turned off, I grabbed a lantern and my tripod. The night sky looked clear enough for photographic experimentation, and the rising, still-full Moon offered an ethereal greeting through the pines.

This is a well-known bear area, and I must admit that this word crossed my mind on a number of occasions. After all, apart from the green light of my Pentax and the rather weak lantern, I stood in complete darkness.

And out of that darkness, several horses charged at me, talking to each other in worried voices. They stopped, abruptly, feet away from me, then made a ninety-degree turn and continued running, talking, running...

All I could think was that they've somehow gotten loose and took off because something spooked them.

I decided to pack things up.

Those politicians? THIS is the kind of Nature they should experience, wild, awe-inspiring, and with the perception of danger lurking not too far behind.