Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Poetry: Confined

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. 



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The Adirondack Almanack publishes occasional guest essays from Adirondack residents, visitors, and those with an interest in the Adirondack Park. Submissions should be directed to Almanack editor Melissa Hart at


One Response

  1. Brenda Bittle Bucher says:

    Beautiful thoughts. I almost thought I was there with you my cousin. Life goes on no matter what Americans get thrown at them. Our God protects us. Keep on going, keep on believing, keep on loving.

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