Thursday, August 21, 2014

SALT-SEEKING MARMOT, MT. WHITNEY


While we climbed to the summit
of the tallest mountain in the Sierras,
a salt-seeking marmot munched a hole 
right in the middle of my foam mat
stashed in the scree at our base camp.
Sleeping on bare rock that night was no picnic.
My bruised sacrum and hips found no solace
from muller and quern grinding basalt into flour.
I can't imagine the marmot survived the night
after eating that ensolite. Clearly, it tasted
good to him, seasoned with chocolate,
sweat, and the yeast of new love under stars.
I didn't think to cut my holy pad in half 
and marry the two uneaten ends together. 
If only duct tape had been invented, 
if only I'd thought to bring a roll with me. 
But the view from the crest of Mt. Whitney
was a feast for the eyes that nourished
me long after he lost his appetite—
when climbing the tallest mountain
wasn't fodder enough.

8/21/2014


first draft: A salt-seeking marmot. I had one eat a giant hole right in the middle of my ensolite pad—on Mt. Whitney. Sleeping on bare rock was no picnic. I can't imagine the marmot survived after eating all that foam. I didn't think to cut my pad in two and join the two ends together. If only I did, and if only duct tape was invented, and I'd thought to bring a roll with me. Still, the view from the top was worth it.

I realized later I had conflated John Oliver Simon with Bob Hamilton

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