Ascents often begin in the dead of night,
Glowing orbs oat amongst the brush
And we step silently over streams, through thistle and rock. Traversing miles of bending trail before the light of day, One welcomes the gauzy lit horizon,
Alpenglow softly razes the edge of ridges,
Shimmering hopefulness after dark, steep climbs.
The peak crawls slowly from behind its veil above, Marking the goal, taunting with faraway closeness.
You look back on trail only in memory, not in longing, Lest you be perpetually turned into salt. Set it down and look ahead.
You reach out to the edges, the pale lit blue places. They must be better than before.
This poem is accompanied by the essay “In Praise of Walks and Wilderness” by Haley Littleton.
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