Basel, Switzerland

We arrived in Basel for an overnight visit with Theresa Waltz.  She is warm, deep, attractive.  Folkhart's ex-wife.  Her lovely, well-groomed neighborhood is a short walk uphill from the Rudolf Steiner school, where she taught until she retired.  We climb the spiral staircase to the 3rd floor.  

Theresa's apartment is light, bright, uncluttered, and artistic.  The view is to the north, across Basel.  The hills of the southern Black Forest rise up in the distance.  Theresa gives us her bed.  The sheets are solid colors:  apricot, lemon cream.  I awaken during the night, swing open the windows.  The cool, clear air of Switzerland is luxurious.

Basel is on the border between Switzerland, Germany, and France.  We walk on cobblestones through the historic district.  Once everyone is at work, there are few cars on the streets.  The bicyclists are all ages; even the aged are on bikes.  We visit the famous church, the Basel Müenster.  They began building it 1000 years ago!  We walk out on the old bridge.  The Rhine River flows below us.  The most incredible lunch, an all-vegetarian buffet, Tibits.  Every bite is fabulously tasty.  

The Autumn Equinox
Arrives in Basel, Switzerland
 For Theresa

Dark feather clouds
blanket the night.

Quietude:  no dog barks.
The autumn equinox

enters through a glass door
that opens to the north.

Even the rivers
find themselves dreaming 

into the dark, womanly crest
of geological time.

Sleep’s heavy breathing.
The next deep inhalation.

Sandstone escarpments, 
the wooded hillsides, 

the forgotten memories:
how summer's auburn

blood beech trees
turns now from red to green.

Across the valley, 
beyond the thin blue lines,

the etched maps,
the wandering riverways,

the black forest sighs
into its turning leaves.

 Abigail Brandt
September 2015

Then Theresa drives us to our next destination, Gelterkinden, Switzerland, the home of her daughter, Werner's cousin Michaela, and her family.

                                                                        Theresa and Abigail