The New Year

Downriver from Palouse Falls

This is the year of the ox, a metal ox I hear.

The metadata from the above photo says that it was taken in the year 2008. I have some memories of that day. I remember driving into the falls that day looking at the hills to my left thinking, ‘Those are gravel bars from the glacial flood!’

The first time I went into that area was with a Geology 101 feild trip of the Channelled Scablands in the early 1970s. I did not recognize those hills for what they were then. Right now, winter is blowing her last white mantles across the Palouse before it is time to wander out into the Scablands again.

I found this older scan of a slide from my father’s collection in my file folder. I remember he mentioned a river trip up the Colombia from that time. It is strange how people seem to always forget about how things have gone before without having anything to do with you. But we all have similar impulses.


I was bound up into the Palouse and Eastern Washington when I stepped off the plane in Spokane and took the bus down to Pullman. When I look back at tendrils of my ancestors, they go back into the Fort Walla Walla region from when it was still in the Territories. I did not know that when I took that bus ride. I did not know many things then, and I still do not know enough.

Palouse River Falls
Camus Field

About johnsmithiiimxiii

John Smith, IIMXIII is the avatar of an award winning poet, artist, etc. who still lives in the Palouse country of the Pacific NW. He has not received much notice with his prose . . . but as his avatar, I hope that he keeps plugging along.

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