[I am coming into the final stretch of the festival season; by mid-October I should hopefully be posting more often. In the meantime, here’s a bit of something to read.]
Earlier in the month I took my very first solo backpacking trip, heading up Chinedere Mountain southwest of Hood River, OR. I had done this hike before as a backpacking trip with a friend a couple of years ago, but needed to make it my own this time around. So I chose the night of the full moon for the best lighting for late-night bathroom breaks and whatnot, and with a pack roughly a third of my own body weight (I am a tiny thing, so even having an ultralight kit is a lot of weight for me!) I did the two mile hike up to the peak of Chinedere. It’s a relatively easy hike, with a nice gradual climb most of the way, and the scree at the top has been arranged to make roomy paths and some sheltering dugouts on the lee side of the peak to give tents a little extra wind protection. There’s an excellent view of Mt. hood’s north side, too, one of my favorite features of it. Since I was there in the middle of the week there was nobody else there, though I had plenty of phone reception in case of emergencies, and it’s not an area frequented by bears or cougars, so I was pretty safe.
The full moon is the one time during the month when the moon rises at the same time the sun is setting. Where I live in Portland there are too many trees and buildings for me to see either happen, so this was a really unique opportunity for me. I was inspired to a bit more poetry, and so here it is:
In talus nest I sit
Between the sunset and the moonrise,
He sunk as low as she is risen.
They have agreed I shall not be without light while I am here.
For before she beds again, up he will fly,
Over that ridge in the east,
On which she sits, a queen enthroned.
She takes up the tattered hems of his robes
And mends them over her shoulders
Brass into silver.
He draws up a well of ink
With which to clothe her hips,
One last gift to her before he sleeps.
For a moment, Hood blushes to see them
So intimate across the entire sky.
The sun climaxes in a flood of amber and rose;
The moon sings her love in blue and mauve.
Their tenderness rings the world around me,
Safe in my talus nest.
And here is what I woke to in the morning (you can click it to get a bigger version):