Sometimes a tree will be there
when you need it most, when
you realize that you’ve been
breathing too long in the high,
thinned out air. Maybe you’ve
staggered, tripped on a rock
you warned yourself about,
but tripped on anyway. Marmots
may be signaling your coming,
and you could answer with your
own set of clicks and whistles,
but all this would only deepen
the dizziness, the spin of nausea,
the dread combining with delight
at reaching the rim of the canyon.
Below, the rock shapes waver,
and you are not the first to think
they look like the dead. You want
to run after them, to tug and plead.
The feeling as it rises has its own
strong winds. You know that
lightning and rain will be coming.
You stand in one of the eroded
places seeking out that tree.
from Tipping Point