The dry grass smells like baked bread in the sun. The mountains have snow, also pine, and sagebrush. Clouds purple the ground in shadow, and sage brushes my arm. Does the moment stop thoughts? I remember walking through Idaho and Eastern Oregon, or even in the low chaparral at the base of Mt. Diablo in childhood, seeing or smelling distant snow and the moment could stop thoughts. The sun hurts my eyes, and the soil is gritty and rhythmic to walk on. I remember walking through sage brush, and the gristly scratch of nettle, and trying to make my thoughts stop. The openness of the land and the beauty of distant snow, the sun on my back. I remember walking through a farm in Idaho and watching lightening clouds gather over the foothills, hearing crickets, and then the thunder came and crickets stopped. The rain started, and the smell of dry sandy soil and wet sage. I remember the rain on my face, and the coolness of rain soothed the mosquito bites covering my legs and arms. I worked with horses in Idaho, clicking my tongue and offering rewards for wanted behaviour. I remember the smell of horses, horse cookies, soaked beet pulp, bean soup from a can for me, the sound of rain on the barn roof and the flies even seemed to get still and listen. The horses breathed and stomped. I remember walking through sage brush leading a horse, the flick of his tail, the heavy saddle groaning like an old house. I remember how my thoughts could stop and rise by the power of longing, and how much I looked for that feeling in dry open places.
The Ekphrastic Review
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