A Year on the Loaf

As some of you well know, I like to wander.  When I wander, I usually bring a camera.  Since moving up to Sugarloaf last November, I've taken far too many time-lapses, all with the intent of of some vague, eventual something.  This is the first something.  The idea occurred to me this past Fall, while considering that we'd been up here for almost a year, "I'll put some of my favorites together and finish/upload it on the day we moved in."  It seemed a reasonable goal, but some Final Cut debacles, along with a case of extreme restlessness, proved otherwise.  But finally, a month and a half late, here it is!  All footage in the video was shot by myself, and all within 5 minutes of our home.  As always, click through to Vimeo to watch the video in 1080p high-definition.  The song is "Wildflower Honey" by Steep Ravine.  Enjoy!

Big Country

This was an interesting one to say the least.  I set up the camera, we ate our turkey sandwiches, and the next thing we knew, the winds were howling and the peaks had vanished into the clouds.  We hid in the trees, attempting to defend ourselves from fifteen minutes of heavy sleet.  Keep an eye out for the cliff jumper on the far right, as well as folks on the rocky shoreline and above the tree line.  As always, it's available in 1080p HD over at Vimeo.  The song is "Big Country" by Béla Fleck & The Flecktones.

Elk Jam

Though nearly an island as of now, Estes Park was relatively dry a few days ago.  While visiting some friends in town, we drove up to Rocky Mountain National Park in search of some of its famous elk herds.  Heading straight for the Morraine Park area, we found ourselves disappointed at first as a light drizzle began to fall, and the herds were nowhere to be found.  

At the far end of the meadow, we encountered some traffic.  Sure enough, a medium-sized bull stood about one or two feet from the road: a classic "elk jam" scenario.  Curious cars crept past him unnoticed as he continued to sniff through the grass for an early autumn snack.  Tourists swarmed and cars continued to move along in slow, single-file fashion.  Not once did he seem concerned by the many vehicles; buses and RVs carried on without the slightest glance from the bull.  There was another in the bushes behind him, presumably also foraging for food.

Around the corner and past the overcrowded dirt "parking lot," the entire herd revealed itself.  At least thirty strong, they wandered around about a hundred yards or so from the roads and the crowds.  Like the bull, they seemed entirely uninterested in the swarms of humans, beside the presumably alien noises of a starting engine or an unruly child.  Talk about gentle beasts.  Anyway, below is a short montage of the herd including a mother feeding her yearling and an enormous bull maintaining the peace.  The song is "The Pasture" by Nederland, Colorado's own Elephant Revival.  Enjoy, and for those of you in Colorado, stay safe!

100 Year Flood

It's been raining for almost four days now here in Boulder, Colorado.  Last night, everything still seemed relatively normal, though the storm drains and irrigation ditches carried a bit more water than usual.  As the rain continued to pour down, we quickly crafted some aluminum foil boats and went out to race them in the streets.  For the record, I went 4 and 1 in the inaugural flood races.

Boat races aside, things changed drastically overnight; the rains grew heavier and increasingly relentless.  We woke up this morning to news of road closures, flooding "creeks," collapsed buildings, and fatalities.  The lovely town of Lyons, which we drove through just two days ago, is currently an island; there is zero road access in and/or out of town.  The National Guard arrived this afternoon to begin rescue efforts (especially in Lyons), but the persistent heavy rain is keeping helicopters grounded.

Some are saying this was long overdue, that this is a "100 Year Flood."  Meteorologically, a 100 year flood is an event that has a 1% chance of occurring in any given year.  For any of you jam band or live music fans, this may bring to mind the String Cheese Incident song of the same name.  Yet, even more so, such an event reminds us of the unrestrained power of nature, and particularly, the immense force of water.  Cars float away in as little as one foot of flowing flood waters, and trees and boulders get tossed around like sticks and stones.

Graham and I went out twice this afternoon, both times to Boulder's Central Park.  Usually a relatively calm and predictable feature in the park, today, Boulder Creek raged under Broadway like the Colorado after the Spring snowmelt.  Calling it "incredible" or "breathtaking" would be a vast understatement.  "Soul-stirring" is somewhat closer to the feeling, though it too manages to fall short of the true experience.  Along with the video below, photographs and more videos can be accessed via my TwitterInstagram, and YouTube accounts.  For now, particularly for those of you in Boulder, take care, stay dry, and be smart.  It's horribly and entirely possible that the worst has yet to come...

Update:  Current estimates range from 50 year flood to 500 year flood, depending on the area.  As of noon on Friday (the thirteenth), it's finally sunny here in Boulder.  Possibly more rain to come, but cleanup and rescue efforts have begun in full force.

First Morning, CO

I could never
have told you when
we woke up today,

when I set that 
alarm for eight fifty-five,
not nine,

and we still woke up
at ten,

that I knew what
clothes I'd wear
and even

what I'd have
for breakfast,

but that I had
no idea

what I would do
the rest
of the day.

Sun and Shade

I promised it "tonight" and here it is.  Looking north along Boulder's famous Flatirons, this clip captures an early afternoon thunderstorm rolling in and dropping sheets of rain over the far end of the peaks.  As before, click through to Vimeo to watch the video in 1080p high definition.  The song is "Up on the Hill Where They Do the Boogie" by John Hartford.  Though I'm still testing different settings and working out the kinks, please feel free to leave some comments and enjoy!

Back in Colorado

Graham and I drove back out to Colorado last week.  For now, we've settled down in North Boulder, but the plan is to move deeper into the mountains in the coming months.  Nonetheless, it's incredible to be back; these pictures really do say it all.  More to come...including some new poems.

Looking east from Woods Quarry, Boulder, Colorado.

Looking east from Woods Quarry, Boulder, Colorado.

The sun sets over the Continental Divide, Flagstaff Mountain, Boulder, Colorado.

The sun sets over the Continental Divide, Flagstaff Mountain, Boulder, Colorado.

21st Century Swan Song

It was easier then.

A whole slew of 
fresh birds to choose from
like the old Love Boat show.

Now, it's slim 

A family every few
towns and 
you have to fly for days
just to find a 
good [mate]
that's not your sister
or your brother's
first wife.

this morning

I was startled
not by how you
woke me up

but when you did

I wasn't upset or
even annoyed
just caught off guard

and I didn't want to 
tell you that

I wouldn't drive you home
that we were home

that you and I
were home

I crawled out of bed
put on that shirt
that looks like an old
slave's garment

and told you
that I loved you


The Emperor of Ice Cream?

Well I knew
the prince of popcicles,
who proved a much
nicer fellow.
Cool countenance like
the emperor,
but firmer in his beliefs.

So, go on,
tell me about his highness,
his lofty lounge
on the uppermost shelf
of the freezer.
I’ll be with his son,
telling tales of summer,
of times when we acted
like kids.