October 11, 2016

Allons! the road is before us!

I woke up Sunday morning with a yearning for a small adventure.  Nothing major...nothing expensive...just something fun.  I grabbed my camera, a thermos of coffee, and my fall jacket and was out the door before 7 am.  The sun was just coming up over the trees, and I could see my breath as I walked to my car.  What a great morning to visit two parks and capture a little of fall's generous offerings!  I headed out of town and found two parks - one a county park and one a state park that I had never even heard of before. Would you like to come along on my field trip?  Walt Whitman came along as well - his cry of allons! (let's go!) ringing in my ears.

Afoot and light-hearted I take to the open road,
Healthy, free, the world before me,
The long brown path before me leading wherever I choose.

Henceforth I ask not good-fortune, I myself am good-fortune,
Henceforth I whimper no more, postpone no more, need nothing,
Done with indoor complaints, libraries, querulous criticisms,
Strong and content I travel the open road.

The earth, that is sufficient,
I do not want the constellations any nearer,
I know they are very well where they are,
I know they suffice for those who belong to them. 
You road I enter upon and look around, I believe you are not all that is here,
I believe that much unseen is also here. 

You air that serves me with breath to speak!
You objects that call from diffusion my meanings and give them shape!
You light that wraps me and all things in delicate equable showers!
You paths worn in the irregular hollows by the roadsides!
I believe you are latent with unseen existences, you are so dear to me.

The earth expanding right hand and left hand,
The picture alive, every part in its best light,
The music falling in where it is wanted, and stopping where it is not wanted,
The cheerful voice of the public road, the gay fresh sentiment of the road. 
O public road, I say back I am not afraid to leave you, yet I love you,
You express me better than I can express myself,
You shall be more to me than my poem. 
Allons! whoever you are come travel with me!
Traveling with me you find what never tires.

The earth never tires,
The earth is rude, silent, incomprehensible at first, Nature is rude and incomprehensible at first,
Be not discouraged, keep on, there are divine things well envelop’d,
I swear to you there are divine things more beautiful than words can tell.  

Allons! the road is before us!
It is safe—I have tried it—my own feet have tried it well—be not detain’d! 

Camerado, I give you my hand!
I give you my love more precious than money,
I give you myself before preaching or law;
Will you give me yourself? will you come travel with me?
Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?

If you enjoyed these excerpts from Song of the Open Road by Whitman, you can find his exuberant (but long!) poem here.

And until I have time for another road trip, I can still remember that 
today is a good day for a good day!  

 I hope you all have a beautiful day as well.


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