El Capitan Poem, For 50th Anniversary of the First Ascent of The Nose
El Cap-- you're so cool that even after 100 million years people still look up to you. We gathered dripping wet in a crowded room in your shadow to talk about how much you mean, or meant, how much you inspired, or inspire, how much you terrify, or terrified. You've impressed so many people, given us the courage to live life a little fuller, or so we said from the firm footing of the auditorium's tile, a safe distance from your insane beauty, your endless provocation. Later, standing in the dark meadow as you rinsed off with a cold Fall shower and a few shrill birds flitted above I felt the futility of our measured speeches, the necessity to try to make human your awesomeness. Warren had it right organizing Thanksgiving dinner on Sickle ledge. (they hauled up a whole bird Ma had cooked!) a raucous serenade to the greatest oil painting of Infinity, a swirling granite Van Gogh that makes you want to laugh and howl till the edges of the ledges are stained, and many merry animals have come to join in. Thanks Warren(et al), I'll see ya up there.
By Erik Sloan 11/08