A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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December 2008, vol 4 no 4

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Jeffrey Woodward


California Trail

Often the land is level, broad and dry and one makes good time. Then there is rain or there is a trail by a thorny thicket overtaken.

A stranger, a passerby, tells of a detour to an easier route. The promised shortcut is tempting and is tried.
From a sky that yesterday was never-so-clear, what other than the shock of unseasonable snow, of those first hesitant, shivering and premature flakes?

Often there is a steep incline. Often an axle breaks.

a late autumn wind
over the Sierras
to the Donner wagons

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