sna poems, #105: gibraltar rock

gibraltar rock is a flat-topped butte made of platteville-galena dolomite and st. peter sandstone. it’s an isolated part of the magnesian escarpment, one of three north-south running escarpments in wisconsin. sandy soil, a prairie on the way up, red oaks and lindens, red cedars up at the top. beautiful dolomite, scalloped and lichenized abounding.

just a perfect upper-midwest fall day for encountering this butte and its many inhabitants. dreamy in the most active and vibrant way.


the salidago

sun bathing

on magnesian flat


baby cedar boughs

under cloud

making plateau way


gnarling bark above

the abyss—

life on the cliff-face


gentle cedar curves


the magnesium


if you made it this far: i noticed this desiccated forb with just an arresting form on the way up but didn’t have the camera. made a note to catch an image on the way back down and found it no problem b/c it stood out so much. don’t even know what it is, and don’t really care. it was a revelation.

also, this little pinecone was sitting on the edge of the cliff, just a perfect, understated still life. no staging required.

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