February 14, 2013

Markers

Saturday morning. Thanksgiving last. A young man lay in bed and let the cancer steal his final breath. End of a battle fought courageously for five years, now over, just six months past his wedding… just a month past his 33rd. His brother is my friend.

Now January, we bound out of San Antonio early on a Saturday morning, northward into the Hill Country. The natural order of life sometimes has a way of getting a little too fucked for comfort and trips like this are born of a need to escape. It's from these trips that spring a level of realness, sieving out the noise and lending comfort through simplicity. That with the help of only the finest coming out of Cuba and Kentucky.  

We stopped in Marble Falls at the Bluebonnet Cafe for mid-morning breakfast. Chicky fried-steak and eggs-over-easy, as one does. "Crackles when you cut into it, bleeds upon the plate, melts in your mouth." Coffee was burnt and bitter and we had a taste for the day to come. 

The ranch was still as we walked through the north pasture looking for cotton tails. Jolie scared up a couple jackrabbits that shot out from the brush faster than any one of us could hope to shoulder a gun much less get off a round (lest we want to boil up puppy tails). On a late-afternoon walk, styros filled with a mind-erasing amount of brown, we came on one hiding out near an old barn. Too far from the .22 and a striking near miss from a knife toss that would've impressed Bill the Butcher, we had little choice but to try and lead it just enough with a 12 gauge to not saw it in half...

... I won't call it a total failure though when I plate this one it'll need to come with a side ramekin for lead shot.        



Robert Frost died 50 years ago, just last month. As we walked along the fence line I thought of his poem... “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,” he wrote; indeed, that which will take us all… time. Shame it has to be, though it's times like this that force us to simplify, take stock, and appreciate the time we have… left.