Mt. Katahdin

Mount Katahdin is the highest mountain in Maine. It was named Katahdin (The Greatest Mountain) by the Penobscot Indians. Like the Sierras, Katahdin is a granitic mountain, unlike most of the mountains in the East.

Mt. Katahdin

Katahdin
mountain name
that floats West
from central Maine
to the slopes of the Sierras
where I walk today       and feel
this Eastern mountain’s pull

a young boy’s Mount Katahdin day
drifts from the East and crosses time
a walk that leads above tree line
to glories of a granite dome
where 60 miles of fir topped hills
stretch below us to the sun

a lean-to on a narrow trail
half way up an open slope
where little legs and tired feet
give up short of father’s plan
and mother gathers us around
to sit and rest and eat

below a steep pitch to a creek
the sound of water barely heard
above the ever changing wind
and here an adult’s minor pique
at the limits of young feet
is surely not a matter of concern

yet fifty years ago today
I still see father standing there
hands on hips       perhaps a smile
just before he turns away
to hike way back to get the car

miles to see
a day in the sun
salt in the memory
mixes with the chocolate
that mother digs out from her bag
to sooth our tired spirits
while we wait

Copyright © 2012 Francis Kearns

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