Over Spring Break, my large family and I packed up and drove all the way from Texas to Colorado; adding it up now, we spent about 72 hours in the car (Texas is too big). While this was not the first time I had been in Colorado, it was the first time I was able to experience the lifestyle and really grasp the beautiful scenery. We did all the touristy things, skied down the mountain at Sunlight Mountain Resort (shoulder still hurts), we relaxed and got drunk in the Glenwood Hot Springs, and the most fun we had was riding up the lift to the top of Iron Mountain where the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park was hidden on the other side of the summit. There was an entire theme park on top of a mountain…what.
While I did let the inner child in me loose atop Iron Mountain with my younger brothers and cousins, I could not help but become SO inspired by the glorious mountains and valleys and snow and trees and animals and leaves and literally everything that I witnessed. Coming from Texas, I don’t see snow, I don’t see these great, huge mountains, and while there is so much inspiration in Texas, it was different. I felt closer to nature, which was relaxing, and something I had not felt in a while. During the trip, I remembered that I had a poetry assignment due for a creative writing class. Perfect! I am in one of the most beautiful places in America, easy peasy to write something quick and decent.
Atop all of these great mountains, I was blank. I could see everything, for miles, and in that moment, I just wanted to be there, and take it all in. And be so cliche.
It wasn’t until we were driving back home the following week that I gained the inspiration for a poem that received very good feedback from my professors and colleagues. I was in New Mexico (maybe, I’m not sure, I slept the whole way back), and I saw all these signs, and labels, and I remembered the feeling that overcame my entire being while I was breathing in the cleanest and crispest air I probably ever have on top of the Sunlight Mountain (right before I busted my ass numerous times in a very failed attempt at skiing). There was no way to label these structures, or call them something other than magnificent. And while I, too, treaded these mountains, I came to a new realization about the respect we should have for nature and the world, and your backyard and anything that we didn’t create.
So, here’s my poem, and some photos.
Questions to the “Spanish” Mountains
Pushed. Up. Until you are so high
and mighty. The wonder you produce, danger
that hangs above. Do you speak Spanish?
How can they label something so magnificent?
Did you give consent?
Who allowed them to claim you?
Your elderly bottom is exploited, while your
youthful summit is rare. Cuts and creases
keep most away, but the bold cling to your body.
Forcing themselves on top of you.
All of your naturalness and power lost.
Does it bother you?