Greg Tonian, 2017
May, the month of hopes and dreams,
Of blossoms and flowing streams.
A time to venture,
To hike trails and gadabout.
How do we choose where travel?
Is it to visit our kin, to escape for a spell?
It was this and more most certainly,
For I had heard something else.
It was the Call of The Chattahoochee!
River where the “rocks are marked”,
In the lingo of the Muscogee Creek.
They too once travelled,
But this one a tear lined trail,
Georgia and Alabama homeland abandoned, lives unravelled.
To Oklahoma exiled.
We should not forget this sad tale.
Perhaps from time to time,
Just like me,
They hear the call of the Chatahoochee?
The Chattahoochee flows from Blue Ridge Mountain
To Apalachicola Delta,
Past Helen and Suburban Atlanta.
These two places I visited,
The possibilities to explore, unlimited.
All was swell in Roswell.
Mostly Merry in Marietta.
Dallas Georgia family, also near,
Was mostly in the clear.
But like the river,
Clouded by occasional rain,
Like the area roads,
Never without curves and dips,
Ups and downs.
We left home on a Saturday at Five Fifty Five,
Crossed the muddy Mississippi at Vicksburg on our 800 mile, 13 hour drive.
We knew we were close to our destination when ahead, on a rise,
Atlanta, met our eyes.
On the route East I understood why I chose this long trek,
To again see trees
To the right and left,
Gazing skyward, I strained my neck
Marveling at their size and breadth,
And the plenitude of species.
Amidst their branches,
Birds flitted and chirped,
My Naturalist eyes,
Were on red alert!
I made my pilgrimage to the Chattahoochee Nature Center,
3 miles from my home away from home.
I jogged and strolled on the nearby riverside boardwalk,
The river bluff trails at Sope Creek I did roam.
Creek and River branches,
And even Family Tree branches were explored.
On a private stretch of the Chattahoochee headwaters,
Huge trout were lured.
I hope to return again to this beautiful place,
Because, as you can see,
By the smile on my face,
I am glad I answered,
the Call of The Chattahoochee!