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by the time we got to woodstock

spending a month in woodstock
legendary hippie town in the catskills mountains
living at the footprint of mount overlook
with its beautiful tibetan monastery and temple
since many artists have been living in the area
mount overlook is the most-painted mountain in the usa

the area has many ice cold rivers
with waterfalls, forests, and red rocks
dipping naked in the small pools
staying in the water for few seconds
until the body freezes and the legs turn stiff
hardly being able to move
then sitting on a rock
allowing the caressing rays of the sun
to defrost the body

woodstock very friendly and trusting
no need to lock the house or the car
or the yellow mountain bike i’ve been riding

many wild edible plants grow in the area
in the fields, forests, as well as on the streets
dandelion grows in people’s yards
wild mustard in abundance during this time of year
on the sides of the roads
with leaves that combine the flavors of mustard and garlic
great for grazing or adding to salads

sometimes forget myself and keep grazing for hours
until my rastafarian friend wakes me up with his “stop grazing”
and we head up to sit somewhere or for a ride in his bmw
to pick up his son from school
while blasting reggae music during the drive
including music by his band
“there’s no peace in the middle east”

working in my friends’ yard
mowing the lawn and cleaning up the forest behind their house
helping the neighbor build vegetable garden
with tall fence to protect the crops from the deer
in between going for a bite at the new raw food restaurant
that chef chad sarno has just opened up on tinker street

an old barn on our street
was converted into big beautiful gallery for sensual photography
and had opening party
invited my five-year-old friends gabi and greta
to go with me to the party
gabi and greta got very excited
got dressed up with nice dresses
put on make up
and equipped themselves with appropriate party purses

while walking to the party
gabi and greta making sure to collect any piece of paper,
nylon, or plastic they find on the sides of the road
explaining to me that these pieces of trash
are dangerous for the animals living in the area
such as squirrels, deer, birds, turtles, and rabbits
who may try eating the trash by mistake

gallery’s walls full with huge sensual photos of naked bodies
photographed on top of mountains
inside forests or in the desert
gabi and greta so excited to find big bowl full with chocolate
each having one piece of chocolate
then with innocent eyes asking me if they can have more
telling them they don’t need my permission
they can eat as much as they want
as long as they don’t complain to me later
about stomach pain or any other health concern
resulting from eating too much chocolate
gabi and greta reply
we’ll have just one more
they keep their word and don’t eat more chocolate
taking the full responsibility on themselves
leaving me free to drink wine instead of becoming candy police

on saturday mornings going to
the woodstock reconstructionist synagogue
the rabbi playing guitar and singing hebrew prayers and chants
several people playing percussions
and the entire congregation adding to the beat
with shakers and singing
the service ends with singing “adon olam”
each time with different tune

congressman from the west coast staying with us one weekend
hanging with us for swims in the rivers and parties
congressman recently ended long marriage and became single
showing us the profile he created for himself
on a dating web site
telling us response been ok so far
we’re making some suggestions for changes in his bio
focusing more on adventurous and fun aspects of his life

two days later congressman reporting
that since updating his profile
the number of responses increased
the age of the women responding has dropped
and the women responding seem to be much more sophisticated
than the women who responded prior to the bio update

the successful results granting me the title of
congressman’s advisor for interpersonal affairs

on memorial day weekend five of us spending full day
at very secluded river where no one passes by
or could even hear us
doing screaming session in pairs
each person yelling from top of the lungs at each other
while looking straight in the eyes
then switching to another partner
we all losing our voices
enjoying very quiet time the following day

during walking visit to the health food store
big thunderstorm with lots of rain
taking over the sunny weather
asking someone in the store for ride back
instead of walking back in the rain
person next to us smiling and telling us
if you don’t like the weather wait ten minutes

ten minutes later clouds are gone
sun is back
it’s river time

© 2004. All Rights Reserved.
Zemach Zohar Wilson, Woodstock, June 2004

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