The third week – hills

On hills…
We find out where we’re at
How strong
We are
We feel
Pushing against gradient

The car less climbs
Those too steep, too remote
To torturously engraved into rock
For modernities speed

These are the routes that bring

We climb from one watershed to another, from tilled valleys, into summer pasture, into the conifers, and out to the windswept tops.

The sheep farms, radio ariels and views across countries.

wind whipped goose bumps at the top.

The cold of the evening is already around us

And so down dark hair pins and through the damp of the forests

Eyes trying to adapt, into the light

Then a turn

And deeper into the still moist air.

The sharp breath
Of a stream
And into the town with its tarmac and noise.

The next day we start on the Danube,
One of those days on the bike that is perfect.

Beech leaves still just a reddish mist
On silver skeletons
The shadows on last year’s fall
Twisting out the curve of branch
Into spindles, stretched and gothic

Sticky horse chestnut bursting buds
Spreading crinkled fingers
Like an octopus
On the tips of its tentacles.

In the sun the spreading, deepening
Of the green begins.

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