W & W 8: A Beech Leaf and I have Deep Veins

February 22, 2019

In winter I typically hike a mile, rest in the woods for 15 minutes, then hike back out. In spring/summer/autumn, I hope to increase my rest/write/read time to 30 minutes or maybe even an hour. Now, there are times when you don’t need to stick to the script. Today I hadn’t intended on a W & W at all. I just wanted to get two miles in on the North Country Trail and I didn’t have a lot of time because “life” sometimes gets in the way of Life.

As I snowshoed in deep, deep snow again some haikus just came to me along with words that would fit in nicely with the poem I began on my last W & W. My still-at-work poem centers around beech leaves. I am always amazed at how these paper thin leaves hang on in winter, even longer than the oak. They are such distinguished leaves too. Leathery. Etched veins. A gorgeous amber color. Almost like human hands.

Knowing I would forget the words that came to me while hiking, when I got to the end of my 1.5 mile snowshoe I opted to use a bit of technology. I suppose there are several apps out there you can use. I found a simple free app called Voice Notes that lets you speak into your phone’s microphone to record your reminders, your appointments, and yes, your words gleaned from nature. So instead of stopping to write (I didn’t bring my Walk & Write backpack with journal, pen, and cushion to sit on), I paused just for a few minutes and spoke my words to my phone. Baboom! I didn’t need to worry about forgetting my nature thoughts. It isn’t perfect, it sometimes doesn’t pick up my words exactly, but enough for me to remember to write them down when I return home. Here’s the haiku that came to me that will become tomorrow’s Daily Photo Haiku (Check out the link to my Facebook page):

Take your giant fork
dig deep into the sweet snow
and indulge yourself.

Living in Northern Michigan you need to embrace winter. And I do! But I can honestly say that it is a bit long as it weeps into April. I am longing for the day when I can venture out into the woods with just hiking shoes on instead of snowshoes. I am especially longing for the day when I can wear a light jacket. And, I am especially, especially longing for the day when I can sit under a leafed-out tree for ONE HOUR and practice my WRITE sessions without feeling the bitter cold or letting my sweat turn clammy beneath my three layers of clothing.

All in all, today was a lovely W & W day. May your day be full of Life!

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