Garnets fell from our fingers.
Dark red, glinting, as big as your thumbnail.
The very droplets of mountain blood,
Seemed to us,
In the ice cold pool at the base of those falls.
Our hands were blue with the scooping up
of the gems.
We camped there on many a midsummer night.
Fire flies and bats flickered and flit above our heads;
Smoke rose from forbidden cigarettes.
Wicked giggling whispers flew like luna moths
behind furtive wanderings into the forest.
One, then the other, would stumble away
From the fire lit circle muttering
Something about a quick errand in the dark;
But really just an excuse for a stolen kiss.
Sometimes a fox would pierce the whoosh of the falls with a bark.
And an answer echoed back
From down in the rill where the water went.
Our flashlights pecked
The summit of the falls,
Water cascading down glazing our upraised faces
Bearing little clots of sparkling petrified mountain blood;
Fractured quartzite crystals lined our jeans pockets.
With fire and beer wound down
Into small amber embers
We slept dreamless
Innocent and loose,
Sometimes alone, sometimes in the arms of another,
Splayed out on the stone strewn ground
Like angels fallen from a great height.
Wet and shivering and chigger bit,
To the droning machines grooming
the greens and fairways of the course.
The Garnet Falls succumbed to the expansive development of the golf course and was bulldozed to make way for a new, more challenging fairway. A corrugated metal conduit juts from the side of a mud hill where it once was, giving silent testament to the magic that lay beneath.
I am so glad I remember…I know where the magic is buried.