Morning breakfast and talk preparation at Cure, right around the corner from where I was staying
I put my feet firm on the earth and with clarity and determination sung my voice and spoke from my heart
“Ten Percent Tithe” the two matrix print on Missoula County Plat Book pages that I distributed to conference attendees
Conference closing dinner. A wonderful gathering of map makers, friends and maps.
The looming presence of power and violence; Wisconsin 64
I was not impressed, I was disturbed. . . the largest Navy base in the world
My poster-map contribution to the conference; “Put Earth First” and “Because Loving Her, Tithe”
A visit to the local Art Museum; Felipe Jesus Consalvos’s “The American System”
A visit to the local Art Museum; South African Ubuhle Women ”Beading From The Soul”
Steps down to the river trail.
Stopping and writing just above the “M”.
Looking upstream through Helgate Canyon. Just above the high water mark of Glacial Lake Missoula.
Mount Sentinel looking out over the Missoula valley, sunset September 28th.
“So I think about the valley. And it occurs to me more and more that everything I have seen is wholly gratuitous. The giant water bug’s predations, the frog’s croak, the tree with the lights in it are not in any real sense necessary per se to the world or to its creator. Nor am I. The creation in the first place, being itself, is the only necessity, for which I would die, and I shall. The point about that being, as I know it here and see it, is that, as I think about it, it accumulates in my mind as an extravagance of minutiae. The sheer fringe and network of detail assumes primary importance. That there are so many details seems to be the most important and visible fact about the creation. If you can’t see the forest for the trees, then look at the trees; when you’ve looked at enough trees, you’ve seen a forest, you’ve got it. If the world is gratuitous, then the fringe of a goldfish’s fin is a million times more so. The first question—the one crucial one—of the creation of the universe and the existence of something as a sign and an affront to nothing, is a blank one. I can’t think about it. So it is to the fringe of that question that I affix my attention, the fringe of the fish’s fin, the intricacy of the world’s spotted and speckled detail.”
Annie Dillard : from “Pilgrim at Tinker Creek”
“About five years ago I saw a mockingbird make a straight vertical descent from the roof gutter of a four-story building. It was an act as careless and spontaneous as the curl of a stem or the kindling of a star. The mockingbird took a single step into the air and dropped. His wings were still folded against his sides as though he were singing from a limb and not falling, accelerating thirty-two feet per second per second, through empty air. Just a breath before he would have been dashed to the ground, he unfurled his wings with exact, deliberate care, revealing the broad bars of white, spread his elegant, white-banded tail, and so floated onto the grass. I had just rounded a corner when his insouciant step caught my eye; there was no one else in sight. The fact of his free fall was like the old philosophical conundrum about the tree that falls in the forest. The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.”
Annie Dillard : Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
The bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™
First Friday in downtown Missoula
“The photograph is a secret about a secret. The more it tells you the less you know.”
On the Rose Creek trail to Otokomi Lake in Waterton-Glacier N.P.
Lunch stop on Rose Creek in Waterton-Glacier N.P.
Rose Creek Canyon in Waterton-Glacier N.P.
Crossing at the ancient Ponderay Crossing on the Dearborn River.
Eastern Front; Bob Marshall, Great Bear and Scapegoat Wilderness and the Blackfeet Reservation
The Eastern Front and Front Range, Montana
Stopping at the Lincoln, Mont. Sculpture in the Wild :: Hill and Valley
Sculpture in the Wild :: East West Passage
Sculpture in the Wild :: Stringer
Sculpture in the Wild :: Bat Beacon
Sculpture in the Wild :: Ponderosa Whirlpool
Sculpture in the Wild :: Tree Circus
‘Lots of students get trapped in the effort to be original. After fifty million paintings have been painted you can see that it is impossible to be highly original. There is always precedent. Who would want to be that original anyway? A better intent is to see that one’s work is truly one’s own — an honest expression of deep personal feelings’
“I am molten matter returned from the core of earth to tell you interior things—”
Anne Carson, from “XVIII. She,” Autobiography of Red: A Novel in Verse
Circa 1971 on the long hike. Traveling much lighter now !
RATBOB 2018: Napa Point Trail Head to Gorge Creek Camp (via Sunburst Lake) to Holland Lake Camp.
Making our way to Sunburst Lake.
Swim and Lunch at Sunburst Lake.
Sunburst Lake reminded me a lot of Avalanche Lake in Glacier N.P.
The 2016 burn along Gorge Creek at the end of the days run.
Tired feet at the end of the day.
Gorge Creek Camp. . . dinner and stories.
Night in the Bob, a full moon about to rise.
Elevation gain to Holland Lookout !
Holland Lookout. Downhill to the Lake and end of RATBOB2018.
Distance: 34 miles. Ascent/Descent: 5,900 ft/8,900 ft. Elevation: 10,047 ft, 5,500 ft, 8,500 ft. Terrain: 65% single track, 23% double track, 12% boulder/skree.
The race starts at Lemhi Pass (12 miles east of Tendoy ID on Agency Creek Rd, 52 miles south west of Dillon MT on Lemhi Pass Rd). The course from the start to mile 18 is on the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail (CDT). The CDT is on or very near the Continental Divide from the start to mile 18. The length of Continental Divide covered in this event also represents the boarder between Idaho and Montana. At mile 18, runners will leave the official CDT for the remainder of the course, but will continue along the true Continental Divide boarder. FYI, at mile 18 the CDT dips into Montana then turns parallel to the Continental Divide in-order to divert away from a section of hard to navigate terrain consisting of high mountains, skree, and cliffs. We as masochistic trial running RD’s think you should experience some of the beautiful skree fields but not the cliffs, so we will drop off the Continental Divide at mile 23 and descend into the head waters of Bohannon Creek and onto the finish line.
“Everything good is costly, and the development of the personality is one of the most costly of all things. It will cost you your innocence, your illusions, your certainty.”
C. J. Jung
On the climb up, pausing in the forest.
On Top, above the “M” on Mount Sentinel
It was already getting hot at 8am.
Tired feet on top, touching the earth. Joy, deLight and Gratitude.
First Reformed :: Thumbs UP :: Go see it.
First Reformed is a 2017 American drama film written and directed by Paul Schrader. It stars Ethan Hawke, Amanda Seyfried, and Cedric Kyles, and follows a Protestant minister faced with questions of faith and morality while serving as pastor of a dwindling historical church.
The past four weeks we have received 4.3 in. of rain. The river through town remains muddy, turbulent as it moves logs and rocks downstream and builds islands upstream . . . well above mean flow. We have had a high of 82˚F and a low of 36˚F. The cottonwood bloomed with the later second cresting of the river, sending their duff over the trails, and the hills are green.
On my run last week I came upon a recently fallen hawk. Still warm and breathing I carried it off the trail and laid it in a bed of grasses. I stopped and sat with it . . . then carefully folded its wings and left it to die in quiet, undisturbed I guess. Suddenly it opened its eyes, large yellow eyes and looked at me, opened its talons. I placed some flowers over it and said a prayer, the hawk had more lifetime left, cut short by a power line. But, not unlike Jefffers hawk, was asking my help to die off the trail, in peace and solitude.
The broken pillar of the wing jags from the clotted shoulder,
The wing trails like a banner in defeat,
No more to use the sky forever but live with famine
And pain a few days: cat nor coyote
Will shorten the week of waiting for death, there is game without talons.
He stands under the oak-bush and waits
The lame feet of salvation; at night he remembers freedom
And flies in a dream, the dawns ruin it.
He is strong and pain is worse to the strong, incapacity is worse.
The curs of the day come and torment him
At distance, no one but death the redeemer will humble that head,
The intrepid readiness, the terrible eyes.
The wild God of the world is sometimes merciful to those
That ask mercy, not often to the arrogant.
You do not know him, you communal people, or you have forgotten him;
Intemperate and savage, the hawk remembers him;
Beautiful and wild, the hawks, and men that are dying, remember him.
I'd sooner, except the penalties, kill a man than a hawk;
but the great redtail
Had nothing left but unable misery
From the bone too shattered for mending, the wing that trailed under his talons when he moved.
We had fed him six weeks, I gave him freedom,
He wandered over the foreland hill and returned in the evening, asking for death,
Not like a beggar, still eyed with the old
I gave him the lead gift in the twilight.
What fell was relaxed, Owl-downy, soft feminine feathers; but what
Soared: the fierce rush: the night-herons by the flooded river cried fear at its rising
Before it was quite unsheathed from reality.
Robinson Jeffers | The Collected Poetry of Robinson Jeffers: Poetry 1903-1920, Prose, and Unpublished Writings
“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming ‘Wow! What a ride!’”
Hunter S. Thompson
“Photography, as we all know, is not real at all. It is an illusion of reality with which we create our private world”
"Being creative is not so much the desire to do something as the listening to that which wants to be done: the dictation of materials."
We’re going the wrong way.
Human race is just 0.01% of all life but has destroyed over 80% of wild mammals
“Humans depend on plants, insects and other animals to deliver water quality, soil conservation, flood prevention, crop pollination and natural pest control. All this is now threatened, not just by the clearing of forests and the growth of the cities, but by the profligate use of fossil fuels which release greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, to drive global warming. Researchers know, through a detailed study of the geological past, what higher concentrations of carbon dioxide can do to global climate . . . There is way too much debate about the issue of climate change and whether or not it is real. What we really need to be doing is debating how we solve this problem . . . Those very high CO2 concentrations could well change the ecosystems of the world irrevocably. If we increase CO2 to over a thousand parts per million, over the next fifty to sixty years, which we are quite capable of doing if we fail to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels, we could literally move the world back 20 to 30 million years in the space of a century. It is like moving ecosystems backwards in time at the speed of light.”
Professor Guy Midgley | Climate News Network
“Cat: Where are you going?
Alice: Which way should I go?
Cat: That depends on where you are going.
Alice: I don’t know.
Cat: Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
Moving up in the world of air travel // stopping
Dad and Me, Father at 96, Son at 68
Bruce, Bob and Me
“If you're trying to be miserable, it's important you don't have any goals. No school goals, personal goals, family goals. Your only objective each day should be to inhale and exhale for sixteen hours before you go to bed again. Don't read anything informative, don't listen to anything useful, don't do anything productive. If you start achieving goals, you might start to feel a sense of excitement, then you might want to set another goal, and then your miserable mornings are through. To maintain your misery, the idea of crossing off your goals should never cross your mind.”
John Bytheway : How to Be Totally Miserable
First stop above the “M” before crossing the face of Mount Sentinel to the Pengelly Ridge climb.
Dancing on the hills, this morning a 12+ mile 2,100’ climb up Pengelly Ridge to Mount Sentinel and then down a very icy snow packed covered Smokejumper trail to the river corridor and back. What a joy, a deLight, breathing hard, legs tired, softly touching earth I wore the Sokra/moccasin shoes.
Pausing on the climb up the ridge to Mount Sentinel.
The 1200’ ascent up the exposed Pengelly Ridge is the most challenging for me. I have to walk sections of the climb. I was reminded that today is Earth Day and that 48 years ago while a student at Oberlin College I invited Gary Snyder to speak for the first Earth Day, introducing him before I set off for Canada later that year. Those years we had such hope and held such vision for a “future to be possible.” A future not bleak or dark like the oil-gas-coporate dominated agenda today. . .but one where the #EarthToo is held in high regard, in reverence and in respect.
The climb up Pengelly Ridge.
On the way I pass a startled deer, chickadees, buttercups and later on icy snow in the shadows. After the climb up the ridge and before you get to Mount Sentinel (which is actually lower that the ridge top) you pass through a quiet forest grove. I go slow here and listen to the pines and grasses and wind. . . and Gary Snyders poem dances past in the shadows.
One granite ridge
A tree, would be enough
Or even a rock, a small creek,
A bark shred in a pool.
Hill beyond hill, folded and twisted
Tough trees crammed
In thin stone fractures
A huge moon on it all, is too much.
The mind wanders. A million
Summers, night air still and the rocks
Warm. Sky over endless mountains.
All the junk that goes with being human
Drops away, hard rock wavers
Even the heavy present seems to fail
This bubble of a heart.
Words and books
Like a small creek off a high ledge
Gone in the dry air.
A clear, attentive mind
Has no meaning but that
Which sees is truly seen.
No one loves rock, yet we are here.
Night chills. A flick
In the moonlight
Slips into Juniper shadow:
Back there unseen
Cold proud eyes
Of Cougar or Coyote
Watch me rise and go.
©Gary Snyder, "Piute Creek" from Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems.
Mount Sentinel above the Missoula Valley and just above the lake shores of Glacial Lake Missoua.
Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front
Love the quick profit, the annual raise, vacation with pay. Want more of everything ready-made. Be afraid to know your neighbors and to die. And you will have a window in your head. Not even your future will be a mystery any more. Your mind will be punched in a card and shut away in a little drawer. When they want you to buy something they will call you. When they want you to die for profit they will let you know. So, friends, every day do something that won’t compute. Love the Lord. Love the world. Work for nothing. Take all that you have and be poor. Love someone who does not deserve it. Denounce the government and embrace the flag. Hope to live in that free republic for which it stands. Give your approval to all you cannot understand. Praise ignorance, for what man has not encountered he has not destroyed. Ask the questions that have no answers. Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias. Say that your main crop is the forest that you did not plant, that you will not live to harvest. Say that the leaves are harvested when they have rotted into the mold. Call that profit. Prophesy such returns. Put your faith in the two inches of humus that will build under the trees every thousand years. Listen to carrion — put your ear close, and hear the faint chattering of the songs that are to come. Expect the end of the world. Laugh. Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful though you have considered all the facts. So long as women do not go cheap for power, please women more than men. Ask yourself: Will this satisfy a woman satisfied to bear a child? Will this disturb the sleep of a woman near to giving birth? Go with your love to the fields. Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head in her lap. Swear allegiance to what is nighest your thoughts. As soon as the generals and the politicos can predict the motions of your mind, lose it. Leave it as a sign to mark the false trail, the way you didn’t go. Be like the fox who makes more tracks than necessary, some in the wrong direction. Practice resurrection.
“The press of my foot to the earth springs a hundred affections.”
“I’m so scared. I’m so scared of dying without ever being really seen. Can you understand?”
David Foster Wallace | Infinite Jest
Spring Melt in the Alleyway at toMAKE™
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
Albert Einstein | Unconfirmed
“Geographer Gilbert F. White, according to his biographer in Living with Nature’s Extremes (2006), attributed this to Einstein in his Journal of France and Germany in 1942. Maybe so; but all he does is invoke “Albert Einstein said”. He says nothing about how he knows this, when or where it might have been said, whether he heard it directly or through a friend, or what the context may have been. With the preponderance of misattributions to Einstein being as large as it is, this is not a good sign. There is no striking reason to assert that Einstein couldn’t have said this; but there is also no striking reason to assert that he did.”
Spring flow on Heron’s Island :: Clark’s Fork of the Columbia :: Downtown Missoula, Montana
SPRING INTO GOOD OPEN SPACE CONSERVATION LANDS PRACTICES
1. Be prepared for mud! Walkers/Runners - go through it down the center of the trail. This ensures our trails aren’t expanding and eroding conservation lands. Bikers – stay off muddy trails. Bikes leave ruts in the mud that will be there all season. Don’t want to get muddy – go in the morning when the ground is more solid or hit a trail in one of our parks
2. Be a responsible dog owner – spring means snow melt and lots of “presents” appear from the winter. Pick it up, toss it out. Bags on the side of the trail won’t walk themselves to the trash and are you really going to pick it up later?
3. Have awesome trail etiquette – hikers/runners and uphill traffic always have the right of way.
REALLY NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOUR STRAVA TIME BUT YOU.
Be aware – take an earbud out if you’re recreating with music. Look up, be alert, recreate in control, be kind, high five people on the trail. Our open space lands are our shared resource.
Missoula, Montana Open Space Lands
“The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.”
Three Things To Remember
As long as you’re dancing, you can break the rules.
Sometimes breaking the rules is just extending the rules.
Sometimes there are no rules.
“Smile, breathe and go slowly.”
Thich Nhat Hanh
The view from the east window into the canyon.
“In the universe, there are things that are known, and things that are unknown, and in between, there are doors.”
Ray Manzarek | often attributed to Aldous Huxley
If the doors of perception were cleansed, every thing would appear to man as it is: infinite.
William Blake | The Marriage of Heaven and Hell
Old Man Lake [from the Dawson-Pitamakan loop trail] in the Dry Creek Valley headwaters, Two Medicine drainage
Glacier-Waterton International Peace Park
“I feel that art has something to do with achievement of stillness in the midst of chaos. A stillness which characterizes prayer, too, and the eye of the storm…”
The bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™
“You must accept the fact that others don’t see what you do.”
Crossing the River
Adding in Russell Street bridge is a possibility but the sidewalk there is narrow and close to fast traffic, still I might give it a try and make it six bridges and twelve crossings. I’ll have to redo the route plan not to backtrack across a bridge & cross each bridge from opposing directions. Here’s a possible plan:
“So this, I believe, is the central question upon which all creative living hinges: Do you have the courage to bring forth the treasures that are hidden within you?”
Elizabeth Gilbert | Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear
Sunrise run along the ancient Glacier Lake Missoula shoreline above Missoula.
“Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.”
out and about by the railroad tracks
our Christmas tree this year
“The reason that art (writing, engaging, and all of it) is valuable is precisely why I can’t tell you how to do it. If there were a map, there’d be no art, because art is the act of navigating without a map.”
Water Tusche on Stone Lithograph; inked and etched but not editioned
Meena the Cat goes for the sun and goes out
At the Saturday Winter Market; from our winter share
“So this is winter – and what remains of the world now that autumn has left us, gone underground with the once luminous grasses and the husks and seeds of all the left-behinds. This is the cold season. Learn to endure it.”
Laura Lush | “Winter,” The First Day of Winter
“The emancipation of the working classes must be conquered by the working classes themselves."
Karl Marx | 1864 Preamble to General rules of the International Working Men's Association (aka: First International) or Communist Manifesto
“Intimacy requires courage because risk is inescapable. We cannot know at the outset how the relationship will affect us. Like a chemical mixture, if one of us is changed, both of us will be. Will we grow in self-actualization, or will it destroy us? The one thing we can be certain of is that if we let ourselves fully into the relationship for good or evil, we will not come out unaffected.”
Rollo May | The Courage to Create
“Whenever you are creating beauty around you, you are restoring your own soul.”
“Love all God’s creation, the whole of it and every grain of sand. Love every leaf, every ray of God’s light. Love the animals, love the plants, love everything. If you love everything, you will perceive the divine mystery in things.”
I'm writing on a Sunday, late morning, on a day filled with soft light, on which, above the rooftops of the interrupted city, the blue of the always unpublished sky closes the mysterious existence of stars in oblivion . . .
It's Sunday inside me as well . . . My heart is also going to a church whose location it doesn't know, and it goes dressed in a child's velveteen outfit, with its face red from the first impressions of smiling without sad eyes over its oversized collar.
Fernando Pessoa (1888-1935) | The Book of Disquiet #68 [n.d.; after 1923]
“We are living in a culture entirely hypnotized by the illusion of time, in which the so-called present moment is felt as nothing but an infinitesimal hairline between an all-powerfully causative past and an absorbingly important future. We have no present. Our consciousness is almost completely preoccupied with memory and expectation. We do not realize that there never was, is, nor will be any other experience than present experience. We are therefore out of touch with reality. We confuse the world as talked about, described, and measured with the world which actually is. We are sick with a fascination for the useful tools of names and numbers, of symbols, signs, conceptions and ideas.” Alan Watts
July 8th I completed the Beaverhead 55K Ultra run; a 35 miles adventure along the continental divide between Idaho and Montana.
August 21st I drove to the Mount Borah trailhead in the Lost Creek Valley of Idaho to experience the total eclipse of the sun.
September 28th I hiked the 22 mile Dawson-Pitamaken loop in Glacier-Waterton NP for my 68th birthday.
October 6-7-8 we delighted in the wedding celebration of our son Nate and now daughter-in-law Ursula.
“What else is going on right this minute while ground water creeps under my feet? The galaxy is careening in a slow, muffled widening. If a million solar systems are born every hour, then surely hundreds burst into being as I shift my weight to the other elbow. The sun’s surface is now exploding; other stars implode and vanish, heavy and black, out of sight. Meteorites are arcing to earth invisibly all day long. On the planet the winds are blowing: the polar easterlies, the westerlies, the northeast and southeast trades. Somewhere, someone under full sail is becalmed, in the horse latitudes, in the doldrums; in the northland, a trapper is maddened, crazed, by the eerie scent of the chinook, the sweater, a wind that can melt two feet of snow in a day. The pampero blows, and the tramontane, and the Boro, sirocco, levanter, mistral. Lick a finger: feel the now.”
Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
“You were made and set here to give voice to this, your own astonishment. “The most demanding part of living a lifetime as an artist is the strict discipline of forcing oneself to work steadfastly along the nerve of one’s own most intimate sensitivity.” Anne Truitt, the sculptor, said this. Thoreau said it another way: know your own bone. “Pursue, keep up with, circle round and round your life… Know your own bone: gnaw at it, bury it, unearth it, and gnaw at it still.” Write as if you were dying. At the same time, assume you write for an audience consisting solely of terminal patients. That is, after all, the case.”
Annie Dillard, The Writing Life
I am searching fragments of an old poem about a flood on the Mississippi River . . . but all I can recover are some missing water soaked pages from the book caught in the flooding.
“At root, there is simply no way of separating self from other, self-love from other-love. All knowledge of self is knowledge of other, and all knowledge of other knowledge of self. I begin to see that self and other, the familiar and the strange, the internal and the external, the predictable and the unpredictable imply each other. One is seek and the other is hide, and the more I become aware of their implying each other, the more I feel them to be one with each other.”
Alan Watts, The Joyous Cosmology
“Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion.” Rumi (b. 1207)
"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone." Thomas Merton from Thoughts in Solitude
- alley life
- earth events
- meena the cat
- morning piece
- national park
- open space