Who can resist the allure of deep green river pools moving under the shade of the big oaks in early summer? Not I!
In mid-June 2016, my husband Peter and I along with an artist friend, Charlie Johnston, spent a week at the Chetco River Inn. It is about twenty miles up the Chetco River outside Brookings, Oregon, which is on the border with California. As I often do, I decided to make a series of daily journal videoitos aka digital stories.
The third in this series of five was filmed on a day warm enough for me to get out my GoPro and get some underwater shots.
It’s just as magically green underwater as it is above. The whole time I’m under there, the words of Lorca’s famous poem are running through my head:
Romance Sonambulo (Sleepwalker’s Song)
Green, how I want you green. Green wind. Green branches. The ship out on the sea and the horse on the mountain. With the shade around her waist she dreams on her balcony, green flesh, her hair green, with eyes of cold silver. Green, how I want you green. Under the gypsy moon, all things are watching her and she cannot see them. Green, how I want you green. Big hoarfrost stars come with the fish of shadow that opens the road of dawn. The fig tree rubs its wind with the sandpaper of its branches, and the forest, cunning cat, bristles its brittle fibers. But who will come? And from where? She is still on her balcony green flesh, her hair green, dreaming in the bitter sea. —My friend, I want to trade my horse for her house, my saddle for her mirror, my knife for her blanket. My friend, I come bleeding from the gates of Cabra. —If it were possible, my boy, I’d help you fix that trade. But now I am not I, nor is my house now my house. —My friend, I want to die decently in my bed. Of iron, if that’s possible, with blankets of fine chambray. Don’t you see the wound I have from my chest up to my throat? —Your white shirt has grown thirsty dark brown roses. Your blood oozes and flees a round the corners of your sash. But now I am not I, nor is my house now my house. —Let me climb up, at least, up to the high balconies; Let me climb up! Let me, up to the green balconies. Railings of the moon through which the water rumbles. Now the two friends climb up, up to the high balconies. Leaving a trail of blood. Leaving a trail of teardrops. Tin bell vines were trembling on the roofs. A thousand crystal tambourines struck at the dawn light. Green, how I want you green, green wind, green branches. The two friends climbed up. The stiff wind left in their mouths, a strange taste of bile, of mint, and of basil My friend, where is she—tell me— where is your bitter girl? How many times she waited for you! How many times would she wait for you, cool face, black hair, on this green balcony! Over the mouth of the cistern the gypsy girl was swinging, green flesh, her hair green, with eyes of cold silver. An icicle of moon holds her up above the water. The night became intimate like a little plaza. Drunken “Guardias Civiles” were pounding on the door. Green, how I want you green. Green wind. Green branches. The ship out on the sea. And the horse on the mountain.