Days in the Hills

by Ronald A Pavellas

San Jose's hills rise above the fog that fills the valleys
The city is heard but not seen.
Trees and rocks are here: the dying leaves, the green shoots
Ignore the city's distant roar
Low sunlight reveals Arachne's glimmering shroud
Blanketing felled leaves
East Wind blows swiftly, surely, as the eagle flies,
Pulling sun aloft
Gusts roll endlessly, bending the brush, flushing a bobcat.
They know its power
Wind and trees combine in counterpart, balancing:
A robust embrace
My calm hill does not yield, giving purchase
To beings unwilling to fly
Tall grass pretends to yield to man in his ambition
Then encloses him
A hawk! She dives, swoops, glides --
At ease in setting sunlight
Insect-buzzy day, foxtails toss back bright sunlight,
Nodding their welcome
Mountain ridges build silently toward the sky,
Hiding dark canyons
Folds of female hill, shrub-covered, sheltering life --
Mating butterflies!
Buzzards soar swiftly, from ridge to ridge and back again,
Silently searching
March winds in autumn, and graceful golden poppies bloom:
Nature's playful whim
A lull between rainstorms yields an abstract sky seemingly confused
By change of wind and season
A two-hill climbing day, each a home to white-tailed kites,
Hiding now from the blazing sun
The wise say there are many paths to the one place sought,
So as with this hill.
This deer path is now my path -- up, up, through brush
Deep, full breaths.
A startled family gives wide berth to this sweating beast
Who now claims his lush-green hilltop
A scrub jay waits for me on the fence rail at the end of the path
But scrams as I arrive
Late fall sun, obscured by haze, diffusely casts its shadows
As its radiance burns through
The quiet hillside rests; trees, brush, grasses -- all are still.
Only insects move
The familiar path is rent by the rainstorm's torrents,
Showing naked earth
Yes, the rock, the oak are here after the deluge.
It is a comfort
See how the streams flowed, running over man's patterns,
Carving creeks and gullies
In time, all will flow down hill with waters seeking their source;
The rocks and trees will go
Man will have gone too,
But now he has the Oak and Rock as unchanging friends.


Posted on 09/23/2002
Copyright © 2021 Ronald A Pavellas

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