Fall Colors in Tuxedni, Some Images and a Short Season of Poems

Delighting in the slow progression of the quick seasons here in Alaska. Taking time to enjoy the company of my dogs and work on appreciating what is good in life. Warm tea, a cozy cabin, the companionship of some of the most beautifully unconditionally loving creatures on earth, and doing what I can to make them happy and nurture their joy. It feels good to take care of them. What could be better?


(Balsam Poplar, Poplar balsamafera)

glorious seeing

the winds and rain were warm today
I joyfully soaked myself through three times
just couldn’t stay out of it,
I whooped when the waves sprayed me
something so awesome should not be experienced
behind walls that keep the stinging hard rain from the skin
that hold back the wild winds from whipping the hair around the face
the brims of my caps all dripped dark before I returned each time
when I hold my flat belly, I wonder what it would feel like
to have life moving and growing there
would he really have come and changed everything so much?
my friends tell me No
the narcissist can’t love that way
he could never find a mate in any type of intellectual equal
though he may want to believe that he can
the narcissist is more comfortable with empty words and flat emotions
he always seeks to find that perfect sociopath
the narcissist needs the emotionless flatterer,
the smooth tongue of the cold, selfish heart
I have no need for ass kissers and big raw empty egos
I have no need for flat emotions and constricted posturing
I can’t relate to those who can’t feel
but I can show them how it feels to feel
they don’t see their sad disadvantage
…that they rob themselves of joy
they don’t see the real advantage lies dormant and abandoned within themselves,
naked and emptied, gasping for that first breath
how can anyone be so full of sniping viperous words
all meant for those they perceive to hate
yet all pointed directly at themselves,
tearing open their hearts and minds for all to see
how can anyone hate half and love half?
how can anyone be so divided?
why bathe others in ignorant monkey-minded waste products,
foolishness and wasting the days away?
until the coat of days is gone
and then they must cover themselves
with these fallen leaves
and hide in fear and shame in the garden
from that perfect voice
strangely, every layer of meaning makes perfect sense
everything they say in triviality
has more import than they know
the conscious mind doesn’t know where they are
but they answer correctly when asked, whether they see this or not
so I dance in the charnal grounds 
with a necklace of skulls around my neck 
to remove their burdens
maybe they can feel something
so fearfully real and so terribly wonderful
so vulnerable like a flower
opening up in love
so they can close their pecking beaks
and silence their raucous squawks of derision
and drink this ecstatic joy of simple union.
I want them to be happy
to love one another…
to be what they need to be
and find what they need to find
it’s okay if I don’t get what I want.
I love them all the same.
they’re still perfect to me
each has its function and its place
it’s all right here after all
just a matter of seeing, gloriously seeing
–Caroline Kroll
Yes, Alaska does have some fall colors, but if you look for bright red leaves, they’re mostly in shrubbery and in ground cover. These leaves are from highbush cranberries (viburnum edule. also known as V pauciflorum). They are in the honeysuckle family and make a beautiful and delicious jelly.

winter is ready

just simple peace
and a love that ate away all wanting and selfhood a long time ago
a love that eats thoughts, and leaves mind
a love that eats fruit, knows the leaves

and leaves bones

that flesh is always there
hung up to age,
every night it startles me as I walk outside
the night world is an ecstatic place
where we remove those burdens of the world
one demon at a time,
killing, subduing, and evolving
in the charnal grounds
all fresh and dripping now

the winepress is ready
with the new rain
and cold, so cold
I am ready for another dark blue winter
alone with my dogs
high on shelter, low on food
high on fuel, low on strife
–Caroline Kroll

The fall colors are out now and a bunch of the bright golden leaves have already blown off of the trees. These pictures are from the day before yesterday.  The paper birches and the quaking aspens are colorful in the autumn here. So, yes, it’s officially fall in Lake Clark National Park, on the West Side of the Cook Inlet.

being gone

tomorrow I shall bring you here to this small copse
to show you the tree bones
and the small bright leaves that cling
l find it comforting to know that you are not here
that you will never be here with me
to see these lands that I made
maybe I should have named it
something other than paradise
so many people are afraid of death
they don’t want to die in life and love
and see this small breath of joy
that opens and opens into
gates and gates
people fear being gone
gate gate paragate parasamgate bodhi svaha
–Caroline Kroll

Pink forget-me-nots started to bloom again, and that was a joyful little surprise. I have a brown thumb these days because there were some problems with the well, and am without a good source of water for this summer, so wild plants do best here lately. It’s very hard to get a good picture of these, as they wash out and appear white in pictures for some reason.

The wind blew over 100 miles per hour today and tossed a lot of things around the yard. It blew the beach chairs up from the beach 50 feet just in time for the tide to come up over where they used to sit.

winter comes

It’s autumn now,
and those promises of love never to be forgotten
are mostly lost like the leaves on the trees
spread out, arrayed in a mosaic on the wet ground
so we gather up the pieces that he left behind
cast the bread upon the waters so that we will find it after this coat of days
yes many, and feed the multitudes
the clouds left behind with spring’s angry, empty words,
arrows all aimed at his own heart
to kill before he could die in love
aimed at himself, to destroy his own fountain
aimed to take on the horrors of the world
and carry them like an angry rash
he tore open his own breast
showed me the malignant monsters he kept inside
there the depth of his fear and pain, his anger and poisonous thoughts
all revealed
then ran away
before I could excise them
before I could even take out my kartrika
what can anyone do
but watch leaves fall on another autumn and listen to the wind and rain?
I didn’t want him to go
but we never understood each other
his words had many meanings,
some good some bad
I had too many answers for every layer of meaning
too many questions
I don’t want anything anymore
let’s see what is left there to work with
who can let their hearts break, and break again, and just break open?
who can pour molten love through the cracked shell?
who can shed their little realities and rectify that craven emptiness that asks for filling
with a real emptiness that is suchness and joy?
I didn’t think it was so rarified an experience when I started this.
–Caroline Kroll

This afternoon the winds created a storm surge that carved an embankment at the top of the beach, pushing the already high tides up into the grass. The dogs rebuked the sea with barks at first, but then they decided that they really loved the waves. It was fun.

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