Author’s note: The first weekend in May is my usual time for a backpacking trip. It is usually the best time of the year for it. No bugs, few others around and reasonably good weather. However, this year it pains me to know it is best to stay home no matter how much the mountains and lakes call me. Instead, I wrote about past snapshots of experiences on this weekend. — Wade Bittle
Tied down, confined by a microscopic foe, by civilization,
a threat to avoid at all cost, its crouching presence my senses too dull to resolve.
Real, gasping, hot.
Yet my heart wanders, eyes closed, imagining.
Soft Adirondack paths, brown carpet of last summer’s canopy, budding spring rebirth.
Essential needs hug my back, hips. The trillium, trout lily standing audience.
Crossing spring melt streams, deep, barefoot,
welcoming shore, warm socks, boots again.
Rustic lean-to, historically conceived, months unloved, embraces.
Smell, feel, sound of wilderness.
Smell, feel, sound of fire.
Meals unpalatable at home, hastily prepared, devoured.
Loft protection, warm on wood plank floor. Safe.
Darkness, awakened to anomalous silence, yet more silence.
Reluctant eyelids open, a barrier-less path to starlight amazes.
Time, irrelevant, stills. Cares dissolve.
Water lapping on shoreline, pine needle alights on rooftop.
Sounds, sights, senses. 10’s of millennia unchanged. Imagining.
My heart beckons …. ‘follow me’ …
Wade Bittle lives in W. Henrietta, NY with his wife of 40 years, Michelle. He has been a visitor and lover of the Adirondacks for many decades. He is 1/2 of a 46’er and has backpacked in most all of the wild forest and wilderness areas within the blue line, with favorite being the St. Regis Canoe Wilderness. When not dreaming about backpacking, he works for the University of Rochester as a Research Engineer.