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Friday, April 15, 2011


earthwork found at woodlawn, virginia

Every week I see this rock pile and every time I think of the mountains of Baja California, the finger of Mexico that extends below upper California. The mountains of Baja look like God had a mighty dumptruck loaded with boulders of one color. Purple, blue, yellow, orange, green, red boulders from the size of a big house to a pebble. I have not checked the place geologically, but it looks like this was once under water and these mountains were made by water currents, each in different colors. The lower 2/3 of Baja figures as some of the most beautiful scenery I've seen up close outside these mountains. It turns out I like pictures of the desert, but don't like the desert at all as a place to be.

Desert gives me the blues, brings up the black dog on my back. I don't know why that is. Perhaps it is the barrenness, but I don't know. Mostly the desert is not barren. Animal life comes alive at night. Even though there is plant life of varieties I see nowhere around here, it still feels like nothing. I found driving across desert I feel down and out, depressed and angry. Come into the Rockies south of the border a tropical paradise, the Sierras, huge ferns, lush greenery and highways from hell, straight down on one side, straight up on the other, little crosses with names like Hector and Juanita where their vehicle left the road and never returned. In the mountains, the dumptrucks have no mufflers. I thought of them as missiles. They took curves all the way to the oncoming side of the road. Their rattle became all the more unsettling after several hours experience of nothing but curves and dumptrucks by surprise barrelling the other way, pulling back into their lane at the last second.

Even with the terror of the dumptrucks and visions of my own cross by the side of the road, I felt good in the lush green mountains, though they were unsettling to drive in. I don't think it's so much that they felt like home as lush green mountains seem to me to have a nurturing aspect. I tend to think of the mountains in the feminine. In languages I know of where nouns have genders, mountain is feminine. It's the nurturing aspect of mountains that perhaps evokes the feminine. My feeling in the mountains has always been in grandmother's arms. I tend to believe the mountains have their own spirits, like everything living does. I don't mean a woo-woo ghost spirit, rather the spirit of life that radiates up through the ground. I'm not sure how the nurturing feeling would apply to the barren Rocky Mountains or the desert mountains of Kazakhstan or China. I feel like it might be the greenery I'm calling nurturing.

In these Blue Ridge Mountains, including the whole Appalachian chain from Alabama to Maine, the mountains are life forms themselves, the force that through the green fuse drives the flower. I believe I feel my very best walking deer trails in these mountains with a dog. The canopy of the trees is a good ceiling with sparkles of light coming through. I've found I love every weather condition, every time of year in the mountains. The only problem with winter is it's so expensive to get through now with fuel bills way up and electric bills way up. I'm a minimum user and I pity the average user who pays multiple hundreds per month with a mortgage too, as well as car and pickup payments, and insurance for all of it. I didn't know there were any jobs in this county that pay enough to afford all that. Then I drive through the high school parking lot and see it loaded with new cars and trucks. Where does the money come from? Maybe it's self-explaining if I call it debt instead of money.

I brought home a rock from a Baja mountain. The rock is melon-shaped and green, sage green, and when it's wet it looks like a melon. The entire mountain was made of these rocks, from pebble to the size of a major house. The foot of the mountain came down close to the road, so I pulled over and found a rock I could carry easily with 2 hands and brought it home. An entire mountain made of sage green boulders, looking like God backed his dumptruck to this place, green ones here, and dumped the bed piled high with a great thundering roar. Strangely, driving in the desert of Baja California, the black dog stayed off my back.

The mountains all around, each one its own color, none with any vegetation that wasn't microscopic, still had the feeling of nurturers. Mountains lush with the green world would be all the more nurturing. I like the ground I'm on to have contours, up, down and around, all the time going through the passes between mountains, looking up at the great high mountains and down at the tops of trees. Clouds crawl across the mountains, making their way evenly through the trees, something neither matter nor spirit. Vapor. Others complain about the fog, can't see. I see myself inside a cloud and the cloud flowing all around me. I think that's cool as can be. Like standing at the far peak of Bullhead Mountain and seeing a fighter jet from above flying low around the mountain.


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