In Lansing, the capitol of Michigan, lies a trail for bikers and hikers alike. The Lansing River Trail is an approximately 13-mile trail through urban and rural stretches alike, lying in the shadows of Lansing’s bustling streets, twisting through masses of deep-rooted forests, rising up in boardwalks or smoothed out in easy footpaths, and all the while trailing the river for which it is named, providing a scenic route for anyone looking for a little exercise. Not as much of that in the Winter, of course, but even in the midst of this most frigid season, it remains a popular destination. It helps, of course, that the trail stretches all the way to East Lansing, and to the MSU campus.
Saturday, I decided to take a walk down the trail in spite of the frosty weather, and investigate the sights I had been denied since the summer, when a long jog was often a morning’s routine. These are a few of the results of my walk. Enjoy.
Observe the breaks. Just a few seconds prior, I had been standing there, on what I thought was solid ground.
Part of the trail runs under the highway, and where there are bridges, there is graffiti.
Several sections of railroad also run over the trail, and the river.
One of the numerous boardwalk bridges that are a part of the trail.
It’s been several weeks now since I returned from Colorado, and aside from a few shots used to accentuate some of my poems, I’ve not posted all that many shots from the trip. This is to set things right. Though I took hundreds of shots while out and about in the mountainous state, I have selected a few here as a sort of highlight real for the trip. WordPress, I think, would be quite upset with me if I tried to upload everything. In fact, I think I’d be liable to break the bloody system.
So here, in a nutshell, is my trip. What better inspiration could one have asked for? Sights featured in my shots include Rocky Mountain National Park, the Red Rocks and Red Rocks Amphitheater, my brother and sister-in-law’s home, and just a few shots from the more nature-inclined areas around Denver, CO.
Moya and Ares
Red Rocks Amphitheater
My brother, Jim
At the top of the world.
My sister-in-law, Cassie.
Perhaps its because neither of these posts come with photos, but today I feel struck with the urge to drop two poems on you. The first was about my night ride through the mountains, and like its predecessor, this one is all in the title: a fire on the mountain. This one in particular saddens me for not capturing, but the fire struck as the evening was coming on, high up in the mountains, and I was caught in my car, in the seat opposite it, far and away from the actual site of the flames. What few shots I did get were marred by the glass and the swirl of the smoke.
Even so, I composed a poem of it, as it still struck me, even from a distance. Fire. Destruction. Beauty. We often focus on the destructive power of fire, but like any other element of our world, there is an unrivaled sense of beauty to it. We fear it, but it is only natural. It may herald destruction, but it is also a forerunner to creation, a key part of the cycle of death and rebirth.
Fire on the Mountain
Black skies loom over the valley—
There’s a fire on the mountain
Like a lighthouse in the night
And the smoke is rising,
Lightning sparks the hills
And only then
The houses in the trees.
The Famous Red Rocks
It’s Sunday, which means the latest batch of weekly quotes. This time around, keeping to the tune of my Colorado trip, all are nature-themed. One is actually a poem as well, written by the renowned Lord Byron. Beneath these I have also included another pair of pictures from my travels through the mountains. I hope you enjoy – for there is truly no mortal beauty quite so great as the power and majesty we may behold each day in the world around us.
There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more.
~George Gordon, Lord Byron, Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage
I believe that there is a subtle magnetism in Nature, which, if we unconsciously yield to it, will direct us aright. ~Henry David Thoreau
I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes. ~E.E. Cummings
Trails wind into the heart of winter,
Built serpentine through rock and wood.
The life runs through it,
Bursting through the seams.
White earth rain down
Upon the precipice—
Shield your eyes against the light,
There is fire in the winter sheen.