One year my Christmas tree stayed in its stand until March before I hauled it outside to the curb. Twisted girl that I am, there are fluctuating moments in my life when I recall that year fondly. Maybe what I mean is painfully. That year I thought life had trespassed  me.
My brother talked me through those times. Told me  that when we learn everything we need can fit inside one Wal-Mart bag, then we’ve learned a liberating  lesson. And now, some years later, we retalked this in the cab of his 1960 Dodge.  Brother, daughter, dog and me. This is the brother who is good at restoring things. Once this pickup gets back to what it was originally meant to be, he will start on something else.
We were on our way to walking his latest dog along the river. This one had been rescued hours shy of being put down at the shelter. Eight months of constant care, she was a new and different dog. How far could I walk, he asked.  Five miles? Eight? He had things to show us. He stood along the river bank, pointing downstream. From here to there and back?       
Sometimes the best path means losing sight of the river for awhile,
a bit of trespass might be involved, he said.
Slow talk, long walk –we watched his dog chase gophers. This is the brother with some of the best story-telling ways. It’s all about pacing with a few teasing touches, he explained to my daughter. The longer we walked, the more she grinned — she knew where we were going. No matter which part of my family we spend time with when we visit Back Home, she’s discovered we end up way way downstream looking down and across the water to where we (not she) grew up.
We aren’t allowed access to the other side anymore. The power camp is gone, but if you squint just right you can see the water fountain and the apple orchard and the birch tree we used as second base. The first canyon where we ice-skated on the ponds, and the second hill where we flew kites.
People from town drive out to this point, sit in their cars and take in the sight. Unless they get out of their cars and step across the barrier fencing they miss what the river is about. One hundred yards beyond the no-trespass sign is when you start to feel the power of water falling.

About redmitten

author of Cracking Geodes Open, Making Good Use of August, and The Peppermint Bottle. poetry editor for IthacaLit. website: https://toomuchaugust.wordpress.com

4 responses to “>trespass

  1. >Love your brother. Love this post.You have been forgiven your trespasses.

  2. >"One hundred yards beyond the no-trespass sign is when you start to feel the power of water falling." That's a great line, Sberry. Your brother sounds cool.I wish I could feel a waterfall today.

  3. >Obviously your brother has the 'way Irish' gene in him for telling stories and wandering…what a beautiful post…between you and me…I don't pay a lot of attention to 'no tresspassing' signs and I do so with the utmost respect (if that makes any sense)…I am only there to look.

  4. >kass-it's good to hear the essence of this brother reached you in this post. i'm always nervous about revealing anyone but myself. and yes, as we forgive others…hi john-i'm thinking you do feel water fall, though. it's evident in the way you write. i'm so glad to hear you liked that line. it's liberating (for me) to stand close to the edge, feel that power and know (or trust) i'm where i should be.hi kerry-you know your irish brothers! and yeah, i did happen to notice once (or maybe a few time) in your blog that you respect no trespass signs the way i was raised to as well. this brother still has a key to the dam. and he uses it respectfully. (wink)

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