Creek Running North December 2004 Archives
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December 31, 2004
Last hike of the year
We three - Becky, myself and Zeke - walked slowly up the canyon of Alhambra Creek. At first, the sun was bright and glinted off the wet grass. A half mile into the canyon, clouds gathered and finally loosed rain...Continue reading "Last hike of the year"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 08:22 PMComments (2) | TrackBacks (0)
When your birthday is a few days after the new year begins, it makes it easy to get lost in self-absorbed reflection as the calendars change. The long nights make it even easier. I have developed the habit of spending...Continue reading "Ruination rumination"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 12:56 AM| TrackBacks (0)
December 27, 2004
A few inches of rain over the last 24 hours, and the creek is up with a vengeance. At creekmouth water oerlaps the bank top. A half mile upstream the channel is deeper, the creek adequately confined, and the brown...Continue reading "Mallards"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 08:41 PMComments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
One from the archives. I wrote it about 10 years ago....Continue reading "Crinoids"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 01:12 AMComments (1) | TrackBacks (1)
December 22, 2004
I could live an entire lifetime in Iowa, huffing steamy breaths into my cupped cold hands, warming the truck to fetch my wife from her job in town. When we met in high school, her hair was long and straight...Continue reading "Iowa"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 09:57 AMComments (7) | TrackBacks (0)
December 20, 2004
Creek running north
I. I have walked Pinole Creek for hundreds of hours. I have seen it in flood bearing trees a quarter-mile into the bay: I have seen it near dry. I have paddled its channel as far as it was navigable....Continue reading "Creek running north"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 02:04 PMComments (7) | TrackBacks (0)
December 16, 2004
I'm gonna go do things other than blogging for a while. Thanks to Beth, Anne, and Chris for their notes yesterday....Continue reading "Quiet"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 07:25 AM| TrackBacks (0)
December 15, 2004
Go read Anne
Today, I am busy. Today, I am wondering if this is worth it, this little corner of the internets laid out for me to poke at old scabs, this eternal blank sheet of paper for me to fill, trying valiantly...Continue reading "Go read Anne"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 06:06 AM| TrackBacks (0)
December 14, 2004
Big Thompson Canyon
The thing you have to understand about my day attempting to hitchhike down Route 34 is the context in which it occurred. That winter, Susan and I had decided we were moving to Portland. She would be going to chiropractic...Continue reading "Big Thompson Canyon"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 11:00 AMComments (3) | TrackBacks (0)
December 13, 2004
I have so dearly loved reading this old Usenet thread this week. Wednesday is the anniversary of her death. I cannot fathom the notion that I have spent a year without talking to Maddy. Just can't wrap my mind around...Continue reading "Yahrzeit"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 05:50 PMComments (3) | TrackBacks (0)
December 11, 2004
Singing for Zeke
On my hike today, I watched a pair of red-tails circle on a thermal, keering loudly to one another. A hundred feet below, Steller's jays called back and forth: raucous cries of alarm when the hawks came too close,...Continue reading "Singing for Zeke"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 09:34 PMComments (7) | TrackBacks (0)
I support our troops
Dave Lindorff is especially interesting today. For what it's worth, since this is a public forum and you never know who's reading, I might as well take the opportunity to say this: If you are an active duty military person...Continue reading "I support our troops"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 11:32 AMComments (2) | TrackBacks (0)
December 09, 2004
North of Barstow, the old lifted lakebed sediments of Rainbow Basin crumble in the winter rain. Fourteen million years ago this was a verdant lake, fringed with oak, palm, willow. Sabertooths and mastodon, camel and pronghorn, rhinos and sloths...Continue reading "Rainbow Basin"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 05:32 PMComments (3) | TrackBacks (0)
December 08, 2004
Going with it anyway
Rain, and an unwalked dog get the fedora from the top shelf pull on the brown leather jacket wind blows cold wet onto the back of my neck. The creek is up. The street is a creek. In barren plane...Continue reading "Going with it anyway"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 08:28 AMComments (3) | TrackBacks (0)
December 07, 2004
PZ Myers provides a link to yet another wonderful riff on those insanely stupid and demeaning warning labels some ideologues would slap on textbooks that contain discussion of evolution. The proposed label reads: This textbook contains material on evolution. Evolution...Continue reading "Critical thinking"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 08:10 AMComments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
December 06, 2004
A cold front came in off the Pacific tonight, moderately strong, and buffeted me from behind as I walked from the BART station to the truck. I was listening to music through the headphones: the Cranberries. As I walked, tugged...Continue reading "The Storm"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 09:22 PMComments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
Hens and chicks
The yellow striped agave has followed me from home to home for the past 17 years. It sits now in front of our house in Pinole, and in a few more years it will be too large for me...Continue reading "Hens and chicks"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 05:30 PM| TrackBacks (0)
I must really like Rana; she needed but ask diffidently and casually when I was going to create a superhero mascot for this blog and what did I do but turn around almost immediately and create a superhero mascot...Continue reading "Silliness"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 03:11 PMComments (7) | TrackBacks (0)
December 04, 2004
Two concrete pads, a metal pole, a peeling sign, and the high-speed traffic on Route 58 heading between Boron and Mojave. The sign tells only part of the story. It was a café at one point, and a rock...Continue reading "Cafe Rocks"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 08:29 PMComments (7) | TrackBacks (0)
Not part of the photo series
Just a shot from my hike today, taken from the summit of Briones Peak, that came out well enough that I wanted to share it. Came out well enough, that is, despite my having to sidle over the the...Continue reading "Not part of the photo series"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 05:30 PMComments (5) | TrackBacks (0)
December 03, 2004
The desert has need of bleached bones. Mine, I hope, will help slake that thirst someday. A cow or deer or sheep succumbs, and its skeleton settles onto alluvial fans, where flash floods off the mountains blanket bone with...Continue reading "Skeletons"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 08:29 PMComments (2) | TrackBacks (0)
December 02, 2004
And bad news
Another sweet-faced boy from Contra Costa County died in Fallujah in November. He was proud of his Marine uniform, his family told the papers. In the photo I saw, the uniform dwarfed him: his thin face, his deer-in-headlights eyes, his...Continue reading "And bad news"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 10:42 PMComments (2) | TrackBacks (0)
Good, if fake, news
In the words of my pal Sean, "if only."...Continue reading "Good, if fake, news"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 06:11 PM| TrackBacks (0)
In Pinto Basin, near the center of Joshua Tree National Park, an imaginary line snakes through a forest of cholla. On one side of the line lies the Sonoran Desert, or at least that painfully hot, desolate section of it...Continue reading "Pinto Chollas"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 12:59 PMComments (3) | TrackBacks (0)
December 01, 2004
I've done a little shuffling through the deep dark recesses of the auxiliary hard drive the last couple days, and have pulled out a few photos to use as informal prompts for writing. Many of them are from the...Continue reading "Ten photos"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 08:27 PMComments (5) | TrackBacks (0)
This morning, frost delineated each vein in each grass blade. Dead plane tree leaves scuttled across the park like Prufrock's ragged claws. Zeke's breath steamed. Framed in rimed plane tree leaves, a mourning dove's left wing lay palm up. The...Continue reading "Wing"
Posted by Chris Clarke at 05:14 PMComments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
Three things I love about where I live
I. Riding BART to work in the morning two weeks ago. I was listening to Lila Downs on the old iPod. She was singing an arcane central Mexican waltz. A thin kid, probably 20 at most, opened his duffle and...Continue reading "Three things I love about where I live"