Travels in the 1st person, singular

Sometimes it’s lonely to live with all the pretty images in my head.

To see the beams of the log cabin with the red corrugated roof, close to where the earth tumbles in sodden chunks into the seasonal riverbed

To see through to the tilted metal stove with a circle cut from the top, the perfect size to rest a cast-iron pot in.

The golden crunchy crust of the sourdough, a tang you smell even before pushing through the wood-and-aluminum door, the door always open on days when the sun shines.

You don’t notice the horizon of snowy peaks until, turning from the heavenly smells hovering on the stove, you look out the way you came in— unnamed mountains fade in and out of the blindingly blue sky.

Endless space can be dizzying, the freedom of nothingness can be terrifying and awesome.

There are a few bikes resting at seemingly random tilts on the grass, a few horses tied loosely to the clothesline, a few dogs lazing about, watching.

The sourdough taste still sticks to my palate and makes my mouth water. My senses put me in the damp grass, water-filled rainboots slowly warming as my feet cool. I wish i could share with you the clean smoke smell of a wood fire in a metal stove with the bread crisping on top. The thin sour-sweet smell of reindeer milk drying on hands, and the chill of the wind on the wet curly baby hairs that line my temples.

Let me take you there, where the road, such as it is, ends, and the water stands knee deep on the hill.

Close your eyes and I’ll take you there,

To the pretty spot in Mongolia I still see with my eyes closed

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