TUOLUMNE SOLITAIRE This river slips slantwise Over snowy granite, Flows smooth as smoke Over hidden edges. Ripples at my feet Wear capricious jewels, Mischievous in moonlight, Like you. The current’s curves And star-polished boulders Blend with the ease Of long acquaintance - So our friendship Has flowed years long, Though you are a girl to me, Still a girl.
TUOLUMNE DAWN Breeze off morning rapids Is a gift trailing scents Of pine, of lupine, Of sweet woodsmoke, But its first touch Is a blue blade Pulled by dawn from its sheath of Ice.
Photographs by Jonathan Walton. Used with permission.
Robert Walton is a retired public school teacher and lifelong mountaineer. His poems and stories have appeared in numerous journals, including the Sierra Club’s “Ascent”. Most recently, his historical novel Dawn Drums was published by Moonlight Mesa Associates.