This is very loosely inspired by Walden Pond, near Concord, Massachusetts. The place created here for reflection and as a metaphor for the "I" behind the "I", the self beneath the self, the deep, dark, fathomless, impenetrable nature of being, is purely of the imagination. Yet, it is also a place I "know" and have sometimes been able to visit.
In the hills there's a deep dark pond,
more of a lake really. On all sides
it's surrounded by tall spindly trees that turn
yellow in the fall, jagged and bony when
snow begins to gather in drifts by
the mirror black edge of the water.
Here and there an evergreen hums
quiet ripples. An occasional pinecone
falls through stillness and echoes the light
brown crunch of litterfall that rises up
and laps like a solitary wave against
shores of reverberating silence.
A thin marsh hems in the darkness with tule,
obscuring its edge with impressionistic
uncertainty, as if brought over-real to life
by Monet. Clouds sail like small white
dinghies on breeze-borne wavelets and fade
like phantoms deep into motionless woods.
Sometimes when my legs grow restless,
my heart ill at ease, I'll wander into the hills,
up vales and canyons and over ridgetops.
It was on one such ridge where I noticed,
down in a shallow bowl, this unusual pond,
dark as a tar pit, clear as open skies.
Since then I've many times descended down
leafy slopes into that depression, pushing
through dry dead branches, spiny underbrush
and finally dark green reeds to the mirror's rim,
there to stoop and run my thoughts through
cool, coal black reflections of the blue.
I tried the water once, curious, and was
surprised to find it translucent as polished
crystal, fresh as autumn winds–Invigorating
even–It's apparent opacity now all the more
mysterious, somehow meaningful, magical,
as if it were a portal to planes of dream.
I've asked around, seeking to learn the name
of this midnight mere, but none know the place
I mean–Not hunters of duck or deer,
not outdoor enthusiasts, not old-timers who
have been here all their lives. It's as if this place
has gone undiscovered all this time.
Yet it's there, for anyone to find–Or so I think.
Whatever the case, it has become my sanctuary,
my sole retreat from buttons widgets blinking
lights, from glowing flickering incessant little
screens, my hidden refuge from a world gone
mad with buzzes beeps and ever-present drones.