And there’s more.
I walked along the bike path that skirts the empty field next to our old house. The path wasn’t there back then, the trees and brush had only rudimentary foot paths worn down by kids and teenagers looking for hidey holes. After we moved, there was a concrete bridge crossing the creek and a dirt path we used for short cuts under the interstate.
This was a place we spent a lot of time, under the interstate, down by the ankle-deep creek, over and around the sandstone boulders, the pillars spray painted in Anarchy.
It’s been at least 17 years since I’ve walked this part of the creek.
I climbed the retaining wall and sat cross-legged under the bridge. The bike path gets a lot of traffic, walkers and bikers alike. They all regard me as crazy. I hide between pages.
There is a lot of water here now, ever moving, but still no deeper than my shin. With the rocky shoals and sandstone I’m tempted to walk right in.
I hate this chain link fence, this barrier. Only yesterday did I realize the great separation we had between one life and another, the interstate like the *rift between two halves of the brain.
There are too many people down here now, it’s safe, not so many rule breakers and anarchists. Do I look threatening to them with my notebook and pen? What am I preying on other than my own failed memory?
Later, I found the remains of our little bridge now an unsteady creek crossing warned against by posted sign.
This was my concrete bridge–reclaimed by nature, smashed and trashed, it’s more beautiful here now. There are openings, a tiny nature preserve, where the water runs as if down along a natural dam, but I can see the chunks of concrete, the memory of rebar. How much has changed in 30 years. How close I’ve lived, but, until now, have ignored.
If I can get away, I’ll be writing here again. There are so many birds. The water runs and runs.
*We started out on one side of the interstate as a family, and moved the the other, as not. Looking at a map, it creates a fissure–two hemispheres connected by a great, roaring corpus callosum.