I-395 North to Reno

Photo: C. Campbell

Photo: C. Campbell

I-395 North to Reno
a Haibun

Plans cut short, I leave Southern California two days early, leave my mom to her dementia fog, to her perpetual present moment. I have no desire to drive half of my 500 mile drive in the midst of a promised snow storm heading in from the Northwest.

The drive is glorious—a cloudless cerulean blue skies flanked by snow-covered mountaintops to the East and West. Mono Lake and Topaz boast still turquoise waters at a low level because of the drought. Our thirsty earth throbs with hope for the forecast of an impending wet season. Walker River is but a trickle.

When I arrive home, I see a wall of darkness in the distance. Trees in an assortment of fall colors whisper in the wind, greet my descent into the Great Basin. I breathe a sigh of relief that I am safe and find my husband and dogs waiting for me. The chilling temperature does not impede the warmth of their welcome.

a heavy gray pall
creeps in like a stealthy cat
promising first snow

Today, for dVerse Poetics, I’m hosting a prompt, asking you for a current weather report from your corner of the world. This drive is, for me, so wonderful–leading along the Eastern Sierra, past Mt. Whitney, Mammoth, Mono Lake and Topaz Lake and so many glorious views. I feel so blessed to live where I do…for more info on this road trip check out this article in Via–a publication of AAA.

Now, how about joining us with your own weather report. The Pub opens at 3:00 PM Tuesday. I’ll be glad to mix you up a drink to fit your current weather-based needs.

As I write this, I see it is snowing outside (Monday 11/9/15 at 1600)! Large, fluffy flakes.

Traveling the Eastern Sierra–a Haibun

dVerse Meeting the Bar host, Bjorn, asks us to write a Haibun–a blend of prose and Haiku.

Traveling the Eastern Sierra a Haibun Several times a year, I drive the 500 plus miles from Northern Nevada to Southern California snaking along the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Every time, varying with the season of the year, vistas of delight surprise me, seduce my muse. Late winter, as I drove over Mammoth Lake pass:

I crest the summit—

mountains peaks span the view:

layers of meringue.

Caption: summitpost.com

Caption: summitpost.com

 

Throughout the year, Mt. Whitney oversees the halfway mark in my journey. Early May, this year, I arrived at sundown as the sun slipped behind her snowy crown. Clouds broke the light into distinct rays—as someone one said to me: “Like God in the movies.”

Her heights remind me

how utterly small I am,

how great Creation.

Aug312011 070

 

In spring, wildflowers of all colors abound on either side of the road. The lakes dotting the route fill up, if winter has been kind. Rivers flow over rocks, around boulders. Ducks and geese bob on Little Lake—a sheet of emerald in the midst of bright red lava mounds.

I drive by quickly,

ignoring the urge to stop—

a woman, alone.

 

Photo: citydata.com

Photo: citydata.com

In summertime, mirages float across the steaming highway. Hawks and eagles circle lazily above, searching for rodents, snakes or road-kill. The desert regions expand in all directions once you hit the Mojave.

Joshua trees stretch

their crooked arms heavenward,

begging for relief.

Photo: desertusa

Photo: desertusa

 

In autumn the array of colors stuns me—brilliant oranges complement the turquoise blue of Lake Topaz. Flaming yellow aspens creep up crevasses into the mountain gorges.

Water smooth as silk,

mirror-like reflections, clouds

float on her surface.

Photo: californiafallcolor.com

Photo: californiafallcolor.com