44° 18' N    68° 16' W

reconnaissance\ rəˈkänəsəns\ (noun); a method of gathering data, often associated with surface surveys, in which archaeological remains are systematically identified and plotted on a map.

we are masterful in our disguises, you and i, you with your camera slung over your shoulder, me, emerging every so often from beneath my dog-ears to pose as your subject. it’s a fine masquerade, and, so far, nobody has suspected our truth: that we are, in fact, treasure hunters. so it is safe then, to document here a detailed inventory of the things we are discovering buried in the miniature glossy mountains of your lenses, and in the folded over corners of my notebook: from the bones of a wild blackberry bush we extract four rusty vertices, which we piece together with a fifth (which we fortuitously pull up tangled in the barnacled carcass of a lobster pot) to form a perfect, symmetrical barn star. we sift through slate and shingles and sawn off shutters to uncover the faint tracks of a once-startled deer, and find, quite by accident, the sea-smoothed scapula of a male harbour seal. with the feather of a bald eagle, we dust the brittle, emptied shell of a one hundred year old crustacean. from the thick alluvium where an ancient river meets an ancient ocean, a spike protrudes- a weather-vain! we carefully cleave it out, and with it comes a small spire- no, wait, a cupola (it’s paneling is leprous, but otherwise it is in pristine condition!) what treasure, what treasure! but it is under a crippled hollow birch that we find our holy grail: a cache of the finest and most delicate leaf skeletons - one thousand or maybe more - seared and shriveled by a season, shaken, then stilled, fossilized by the sheer intensity of this autumnal atlantic cold.

we are masterful in our disguises, you and i, you with your camera slung over your shoulder, me, emerging every so often from beneath my dog-ears to pose as your subject. it’s a fine masquerade, and, so far, nobody has suspected our truth:

that we are, in fact, treasure hunters.

so it is safe then, to document here a detailed inventory of the things we are discovering buried in the miniature glossy mountains of your lenses, and in the folded over corners of my notebook:

from the bones of a wild blackberry bush we extract four rusty vertices, which we piece together with a fifth (which we fortuitously pull up tangled in the barnacled carcass of a lobster pot) to form a perfect, symmetrical barn star.

we sift through slate and shingles and sawn off shutters to uncover the faint tracks of a once-startled deer, and find, quite by accident, the sea-smoothed scapula of a male harbour seal.

with the feather of a bald eagle, we dust the brittle, emptied shell of a one hundred year old crustacean.

from the thick alluvium where an ancient river meets an ancient ocean, a spike protrudes- a weather-vain! we carefully cleave it out, and with it comes a small spire- no, wait, a cupola (it’s paneling is leprous, but otherwise it is in pristine condition!) what treasure, what treasure!

but it is under a crippled hollow birch that we find our holy grail: a cache of the finest and most delicate leaf skeletons - one thousand or maybe more - seared and shriveled by a season, shaken, then stilled, fossilized by the sheer intensity of this autumnal atlantic cold.