The Trackless Waste

Canada Geese

Posted on: February 3, 2017

The office building I now inhabit (partially) has a backyard area, which has attracted a flock of Canada Geese:


They are large, healthy and vital animals; curious, and nearly unafraid. You can walk within five feet of them without alarming them, and they will generally just move over a little if you do.


The population varies from day to day; I have seen as many as nineteen, with a few green-headed mallard ducks mixed in as well. They need no shelter, no clothes, no medicine, no money; they are eminently suited for survival in the northern, snowy version of the Trackless Waste.

They leave enormous amounts of droppings, which are a minor nuisance on the way into the building. These will decay and vanish soon enough after they leave; a colleague tells me they will raise their young in the ravine behind the building, stay until about May, and fly away until next autumn.

Leaving no buildings, no history, no writing, no culture; is this the secret to survival in the Trackless Waste? Or are all our monuments as pointless and ephemeral, on the whole, as a goose nest or their droppings? Should you care if all you do is ephemeral, since you are?

Does anyone watch your comings and goings in the Trackless Waste?



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Days beyond counting

February 2017
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Past occurrences

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