A blank spot on the map

2 April 2020


A new home for me and a small farewell to Scholars and Rogues…


The US Postal Service recognizes the address as Nehalem Boulevard, which gives the impression of a lovely, quiet stretch of street lined with trees and strollers, rather than the busy logging-truck and tourist-laden coastal highway.

It is lovely – the view across Nehalem River and bay are spectacular. There is no question this is the best view I’ve ever lived with. I look across the island in the middle of the bay, and I can see the tide – high and low and slack. I can see the white caps on the river when the tide comes in with the wind as the river pushes itself west to the ocean and the current’s frantic rush to the river mouth when the tide ebbs.

The weather is crazy – rain, rain, rain, hail, sun, rain, wind, rain, rain, hail, sun, wind, rain. That is the first hour of the day. I could not keep up with the changing weather here if I was required to do so.

The light follows suit. The river reflects the sky; the clouds reflect the sun; the clouds make the river look like quicksilver – the water unfurling in a long band of light, like a blank spot on a map, unknown and invisible in plain sight.

I long to walk on this island, across from the noise of the highway, amid the ducks and blackbirds, the frogs and geese, the herd of elk grazing in the saltmarsh. When the light is low, the liquid mercury shine of the river draws me in, invites me to be there on the surface or slide into the cool depth and flow with the light and current, west to the sea. I long to join that band of light on its journey to fill in the blank spot on my map.


There will always be roads not taken enough. Journey on, my friends, and farewell.


Oregon coast, The Road not Taken Enough, Tamara Enz, crow, tracks, patterns, sand