Notes on Retreat

Notes on Retreat

September 22, 2021

A simple life.  A series of trails.  A coastline.  A cedar cabin.  Some wooden hooks for clothes.  A shelf.  A cot with woolen blankets.  Windows.  The sounds of the sea at night.  The hum of lobster boats in the earliest morning hours.  A brine that permeates everything, everything wet, threatening to grow moss as thick as what lines the forest floor, if we just give it enough time.

Each morning, I walk on the blue trail over moss cushions and five felled logs – the fourth one rocks a bit, lichen mandalas cover stone slabs.  Each morning, I find new colonies of mushrooms – some are glossy red toadstools, one, a two-tiered pecan pie, another, ghostly white trumpets.  One is shaped like a donut, another spins a fine yarn of spores, a mushroom erupting with silky threads while last week mushrooms stand there in the shadows.  They look charred, as if the wild fire of decomposition has roared through the Maine woods and taken their color and with it their life.  

The blue trail hugs the coastline and peeks at boulders and the brightly colored buoys that mark the evenly spaces lobster traps.  A granite slide marks the best entrance to the swimming cove and just after high tide is the best time to swim.  The cove water is clean and clear of seaweed - warmer later in the day. The moon snails have built their rubbery collars camouflaged in the sand, modernist, ephemeral works.  

When the moon rises, it is tinged pink with western smoke.  One moon for all of us.