Indian Cove

We sit among giant boulders ,steaming coffee trails into the morning sky. Primitive monoliths from another time before our jumbled world surrounds us in insignificance. Leaving camp I walk the trail, Sam the Lab runs through the Joshua,Yucca and stiletto like cacti, silent remains all around us testify,columns of stone,thrust upward and carved by wind and water. All manner of desert plants made more surreal by the compacted white floor of sparkling granite. The raven sentinel of the ancients ,sits on a lone yucca tree, his raspy alarm rings out warning. The raven takes flight overhead,there is a whooshing sound of his wings cutting through the cold air above me. Campers are stirring below me but here for a brief moment ,I am timeless.

Midday, the sun has lulled into a euphoric state. Young rock climbers are honing their skills ,traversing the giant boulders with well place foot holds and tightened ropes. Sun glistens on the rocks showing the hidden minerals that lie beneath the surface. Cave like overhangs with smoke blackened walls from ancient fires testify of people who hunted and gathered on this land. If you listen with your mind ,you can almost hear the drums of the Shaman and the laughter of the women and children as they passed the day in this timeless place. This revelry is broken by the distant cadence of marching , a platoon of very young Marines comes into view, they purposefully look neither left or right . The rear guard carries comrades in a mock exodus from and imaginary battlefield . They too are scaling the boulders but hey train for the battlegrounds of the Mid-East. While we take in the primeval beauty of the canyons and sculptures of the giants, the guns of war thunder from the distant military base below on the desert floor, the magic suddenly fades and brings us back to the grim reality . We are still here in the Land of the Free and those who are brave enough to defend this,our land.

Indian Cove

patti haskins

Red Bluff, Ca., United States

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