Smuggler’s Notch 2012 Travelogue, Part III

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August 22nd

Sterling Pond, blue water rippling. Madonna rises behind it, a mother holding a bowl on her lap. All the short breaths and hard sweats on the steps of the Sterling Pond Trail ascending above the Notch are forgotten.

We snack and lounge
At this mountain pond

Spruce Peak overlooks the surrounding mountains. Camel’s Hump rises in the distance. We see all of Mansfield’s features.

Our legs are so much trembling Jell-o by the time we finish our descent of the Rumrunner’s Trail. The Sterling-Madonna Base Lodge at the trail’s base is a sudden oasis of rest.

Verdant Vistas
Overcome by our own

Peeling red paint on weather-worn siding of a glorified barn — not an auspicious first impression!

We wait to be seated. The décor is both trendy and quaint: Dim light, dark paneling, streamers with various-colored lights, sombreros on one wall.

Seated at last, we order. My enchilada is as good as any I had at home. A delightful surprise!

Summer sunset
A bite of refried beans, washed down
with sangria

The fire beckons every child with a stick and marshmallow. Then Goodtime Charlie arrives to sing and strum.

Larry and Erica join us. Their daughter hops along to the music on both feet.

“Nice Night! Cool Night!”
Beyond the songs and “Hot Fire!”
Summer stars


next: Read Smuggler’s Notch 2012 Travelogue, Part IV

previous: Read Smuggler’s Notch 2012 Travelogue, Part II


photograph by Jordan McQueen


Image Curve’s Manifesto


Frank J. Tassone

I fell in love with writing ever since I wrote my first short story at the age of 12 and my first poem in high school. My free-verse has appeared in the literary e-zine Pif. My haibun has been published in Cattails, Haibun Today, Contemporary Haibun Online (CHO) and Contemporary Haibun, CHO's annual print anthology. My haiku has been published by the Haiku Foundation. My senryu has been published in Failed Haiku. I regularly perform haibun and other haikai with Rockland Poets. I am honored to be a part of the Image Curve community as a contributing poet. Visit my website to see more of my poetry. Follow me on twitter @fjtassone2 and like my Facebook page American Haijin for updates on my latest work.

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