We began the new album
we began it in a place and that place is hard to get to.
The place, the beginning of the album, is a wall of trees that have always pulled me toward them, there’s always a hold, pulling me toward the edge and into the cover behind.
5 days after the album began, I already let it pull me back, and I flanked the spot on a dive into the woods. I held to the drying river, but something followed me, I could feel it, behind and to the right.
I came to the edge of a cedar stand in which it was night. To my left was daytime and to my right was night, and I had no choice but to climb into the cold icy pocket of darkness and I could feel whatever was following me, quietly moving somewhere deep inside.
The further in I walked, the more trees I saw adorned with claw marks. Deep marks, 3 in a row, above my head. The further in I crawled, the more cold air the floor expelled with every clunky step, and every knee on a downed giant. It seemed like it would last forever.
I veered back toward the creek bed and that’s where I saw it. A tan flash just inside the tree line, and watched as a big log dropped, something big knocked it, something big was in there and I backed up through the creek and climbed the opposite bank, fingers in the mud and I stood still and apparently so did it, both listening.
Minutes later I heard the cracking branches far into the canyon. Far in the direction of the pulling.
I decided to loosen the hold and turned.
I hurried back through the lighter side of the forest, south bank, and kept an eye for tracks, and saw no tracks but geese talons in the snow.
I made a direct line through the woods, off trail, as if holding onto a rope I strung on the way into a cave. And sure enough I surfaced at the spot. At the spot the album began.
And I stood there, in the sun on the edge of the tree line, and it is one of the quietest places I know.