Pip always goes with me and waits patiently while I sit on the Poets’ Bench, halfway along the rough trail. The bench is a rough-hewn creation for two, although no one else has ever sat there with me. I keep a sun-worn red bag there, with a small collection of Emily Dickinson’s poems in it. I try every day to memorize a few more lines.
We talked as girls do, fond and late—
We speculated fair–
On every subject, but the grave—
Of ours, none affair.In the midst of the confusion and chaos of this presidential race, I’m comforted by my daily walk to the pond.
Then Pip and I go on to the pond where I eat my picnic lunch and he explores.
I had the pond dug years ago, before we were in this dire drought; now, when I wonder if that was wise, I am reassured by the presence of the birds who flit through the two Pinion trees near where I sit.
At first they are too shy to come down to the water, but after a few minutes, they begin, cautiously, to descend from the trees, stepping down daintily to take a few tiny sips—Black-capped Chickadees and a few Nuthatches, reminding me that many other birds and animals drink here when I’m not around. It’s the only source of water for many miles.
Years ago, when two of my granddaughters who live here were small, they chose the antic sculptures that grace the edge of the pond; one is a fountain, the other toots a horn.
The girls are grown-up now, too old to visit the pond, but I remember hearing them shouting when they used to play here with their dogs.
Walking back, I take the lower trail, with its distant view of the mountains in the Santa Fe watershed. They remind me of a song out of my childhood:
Over the hills and a great way off
The wind will blow my top knot off.”
Indeed, I am blessed.