Iceland Spar - Mount Baldwin

26 Aug 2008 - by Dave Ring

Coming down from Constance Lake,
I looked off east over a basin
of marshy grass and meandering streams
that lies to the south of Lake Mildred.
With the sun behind I saw a shelf
bare and grey above the meadows,
smooth and sere, seeming lifeless,
moon dust shoulder of Mount Baldwin.
Not on my map, narrow but clear,
a path come up from unseen switchbacks
reached the shelf and ran across it,
straight and lonely, leading north.
But back of the trail under Baldwins cliffs
a mound of scree at the mouth of a cleft
glinted like broken glass in the sun,
or sparks of water on a wet slope.

No time that day to take a detour; another year I would know to look in the wide meadow walking above Mildred for a faint trail to follow upward past the wreck of a ruined cabin, finding the dusty desolate plain, the broken crystals and Bright Dot Lake.

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