CLIFF CREGO | Braided Stream, the central Alps

Braided Stream, the central Alps
(current border between Switzerland
and Italy)
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I love these border crossings that defy border controls!
Even though we are here descending down into what is
currently part of the nation state of Italy, the mountain
farming communities close by speak not Italian, but
a highland dialect of German. The Alps as cultural bio-
region have been repeatedly fragmented and broken up
by the ravages of war. Now, the Swiss strongly support family
farms; the Italians do not. So the communities downstream
of this great divide feel naturally more than a little jealous
of their northern counterparts.

On the road in the Alps.

TREE OF AWAKENING—a long-line sonnet

From the high pass above, looking down on the river,
The clearing mist and bits of sun breaking through the clouds,
Then suddenly, a shining tree of rivulets and rills is revealed,
The whole flowing down, flowing down to join a central trunk

Of one great river, one great pattern of life. They say,
Bell-makers of old heard all this silver-shimmering as sound,
Sounds full of partials sparkling above the ground tone
Like snow crystals in the afternoon sun, feeding the ground

Like the veins of a leaf feed the twig, feed the branch,
Feed the tree, cascading down like beings of pure
Ethereal light to embody and people the Earth, O

Rounded feminine vowel that holds the whole, O sharp
Consonant that is the power of the male. Listen: The longer
The metal rings, they say, the deeper and more perfect their union.

Camp Lost & Found,
Eagle Cap Wilderness

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All Photographs & texts by Cliff Crego © 1998-2016
(created: X.25.2011)