When I’m on a vacation, be it a month-long backpacking trip or weekend jaunt, each day I plan to leave a section of Walt Whitman’s Song of the Open Road. I might leave it in a B&B guestbook, tuck a note behind a hotel painting or write it on a dollar bill I spend at a hot dog stand. In any case, I’ll be tracking where I leave the poem here. I call it The Open Road Project. Click on the stanzas below to find out where they’ve been left and track the poem’s progress here.
This weekend I found myself lucky enough to be visiting dear friends Amy and Mike at their lovely home in West Virginia. The festivities included a concert at our friend’s school house juke joint, building and enjoying a sweat lodge and eating a fantastic early Thanksgiving potluck.
I put the 13th section of the poem in this sweet little red wagon-come-wheelbarrow, which we used to haul to wood from the yard to the sweat lodge. It was nowhere to be seen by the time I started chopping.
“From all that has been near you, I believe you have imparted to yourselves, and now would impart the same secretly to me; From the living and the dead I think you have peopled your impassive surfaces, and the spirits thereof would be evident and amicable with me.”