IN THE SKY ABOVE

On the way back
in the sky above, the water below.
Overhead a young bald eagle in flight
downstream into the distance
I saw her this morning upstream
And then the heron passes. YA) big birds above me
in the cold winter air.
The icy river below.
Traveling together now
interwoven one breath, water and air and flesh.

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C O L D // W A R M

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Crossing the bridge the wind chill was roughly -32˚F . . . COLD
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In front of the heater it was a LOT warmer

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A WESTERN NOTHINGNESS

The [f]ACT NOW: Climate Change is Real cards are available in the toMake™ store as ‘Pay What You Want’ … I’ll be mailing them out later this week for the Lunar New Year of the Brown Earth Pig … so watch for your copy if you’re on the mailing list. Otherwise go to the store and request a copy while they are still in print.

And today is the birthday of Dietrich Bonhoeffer (4 February 1906 – 9 April 1945), the German pastor, theologian, anti-Nazi dissident, and key founding member of the Confessing Church. “
Apart from his theological writings, Bonhoeffer was known for his staunch resistance to Nazi dictatorship, including vocal opposition to Hitler's euthanasia program and genocidal persecution of the Jews.[2] He was arrested in April 1943 by the Gestapo and imprisoned at Tegel prison for one and a half years. Later, he was transferred to a Nazi concentration camp. After being accused of being associated with the July 20 plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, he was quickly tried, along with other accused plotters, including former members of the Abwehr (the German Military Intelligence Office), and then executed by hanging on 9 April 1945 as the Nazi regime was collapsing.” wiki

“The nothingness into which the West is sliding is not the natural end, the dying, the sinking of a flourishing community of peoples . . . . Instead, it is again a specifically Western nothingness: a nothingness that is rebellious, violent, anti-God, and antihuman. Breaking away from all that is established, it is the utmost manifestation of all the forces opposed to God. It is nothingness as God; no one knows its goal or its measure. Its rule is absolute. It is a creative nothingness that blows its anti-God breath into all that exists, creates the illusion of waking it to new life, and at the same time sucks out its true essence until it too disintegrates into an empty husk and is discarded. Life, history, family, people, language, faith—the list could go on forever because nothingness spares nothing—all fall victim to nothingness.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer in Ethics

A cold front passed overhead today quickly dropping the barometric pressure down to 29.2in. and passing through with 30knt winds, blowing snow and cold arctic air with temperatures plummeting from 35˚F to 6˚F (without the wind chill). A winter storm in our intermountain west valley.

Feb_3_weather

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[f]ACT NOW

FACT ACT NOW
Climate Change is Real and Affects Everyone and Everything[f]ACT_NOW

The [f]ACT cards for Year of the Brown Earth Pig 2019 are printed; five matrix run in two colors and a lot of fun using the #blox modular type for the first time. Now to score, fold, seal, stamp, address and mail. They should go out in time by the new moon next week; Judith’s birthday by the way. And if, for some reason you do not receive one because I neglected to either know your address, deleted you from the intended recipients, or the postal system ate the recycled cotton flurry card stock … well then please let me know and I will correct the situation. There are extra.

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[f]ACT NOW

The [f[ACT print uses P22blox modular 1 inch square type.


The edition continues to make progress; interrupted by the house repair and general winter darkness and cold. It has been challenging to assemble the modular pieces, and ensure they align correctly. [f]ACT is a multiple matrix/color print on 9x11 inch Flurry Cotton soft white cover stock.


I have two colors printed and several more runs to complete. ACT was printed in Pantone Orange 021. Looks red but it is really more orange than this image indicates.


And fACT, locked in the chase and all inky


is printed in Black.


NOW will be printed next, below fACT//ACT in orange and overprinted in a transparent base. The modular squares are evident on the print.


The insert text will be in Stafford 24 pt. and will fit nicely between the 3 and 4 inch blox lettering.

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(f)ACT NOW

Proofing the first color of “(f)ACT NOW;” a three-matrix letterpress print using modular P22 Analog Blox type
The always changing bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™

Wintertime in the alleyway at toMake™ Press & studio
On the outside’s in-side . . . snowing in the backyard

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WHERE ARE YOU GOING?

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

Meena the Cat takes time out of her busy day to help us

Solstice celebration with a gingerbread Stonehenge

Meena the Cat having finished her reading for the day

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DIVERSITY

“You can’t let the possibility that ignorant people will interpret your ideas as racist keep you from discussing critical issues honestly. . . . Too many rich people in the world is a major threat to the human future, and cultural and genetic diversity are great human resources.”

Paul Ehrlich Collapse of civilisation is a near certainty within decades, Interview The Guardian


December 16th 2015 stopping along the Flathead River en-route west on Mont. highway 200. Three pinhole images, 4x5 in. on film.

The two images below show the location of sunrise (orange), sunset (red) and the path of the sun (yellow) for the summer and winter solstices. The orange line shows where the sun appears to rise from our studio windows and the red line where it appears to set. toMake™ studio is located in the center of the arbitrary circle which indicates the cardinal directions.


Winter and Summer Solstice at toMake™ studio

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ECCENTRICITY OF LIFE

The winter market on Saturdays has started up. It’s a short walk now to pick up our CSA share.


Saturday at the Senior Center: the Winter Market

In other news, Venus is visible in the morning . . . & the sun is lower on the northern hemisphere horizon, just in case you didn’t notice, and comes through the windows of the studio in a noticeably different angle. Daylight here at toMake™ studio is 9 hours and 29 minutes with the sun rising at 7:35am MST.


The sun transits at 12:20pm MST not at noon as you might imagine. Because we live so far west (6 minutes into the into the PST) in the Mountain Standard time zone our clocks are 36 minutes behind of sun time. Think of it like this; it takes 36 minutes after noon for the sun to be directly overhead in the south.


But that would mean that the transit (LMT) would occur at 12:36pm MST. The earth does not revolve around the sun in a circular orbit, but an elliptical one, sometimes going faster and sometimes slower around the sun . . . so the eccentricity of earth’s orbit means that the Equation of Time (EOT) is +15min 52sec fast today and this results in Local Time (LT) noon being at 12:20pm MST (12:00+ 36min - 16min =12:20).


An analemma is a diagram showing the variation of the position of the Sun in the sky over the course of a year, as viewed at a fixed time of day and from a fixed location on the Earth. The north–south component of the analemma is due to change of the Sun's declination caused by the tilt of the Earth's axis, and the east–west component is due to nonuniform rate of change of the Sun's right ascension, governed by combined effects of axial tilt and Earth's orbital eccentricity. The diagram has the form of a slender figure eight, and can often be found on globes of the Earth. WIKI.


Running now necessitates more cloths and careful footing on the frozen and often icy trails. Like this morning; a 6-8 knts headwind in the canyon made the 23˚F feel decidedly colder. The river remains open but most of the standing water along the trails is frozen now. Post-election recovery the bulletin board in the alleyway has returned to “normal.”

Out and about in downtown Missoula ? Stop in at The Runners Edge on Higgins a block north of Broadway and see “The Way Across”.


The Way Across: on display at the Runners Edge in downtown Missoula

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THIS IS WHY I GET UP

Leaves are a brown-yellow, damp
Fallen and Still on the soft river trail
Now the season is darker
The early mornings quiet
This is why I get up.


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WHOLLY GRATUITOUS

A crisp autumn morning, just 35˚F but blue and beautiful along the river. I got the okay from the doctor yesterday to start running again and so I did just that this morning. Dancing along the river trail, up and down the side hill and then off-trail on the way back on the single track. New shoes to soften the landing . . . I feel so grateful that I am still doing this. And approaching my 69th trip around the sun next week. The Equinox arrives this Saturday evening; days and nights equal and the cold means the cat is sleeping close in between us all night long.



“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

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HURRICAN FLORENCE

Hurricane Florence; water, weather, wind, energy, the earth in motion. Beautiful.









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FAT MAN

The event at Nagasaki August 9th, 1945
Three days after the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, a second atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki on August 9 – a 21-kiloton plutonium device known as "Fat Man.” On the day of the bombing, an estimated 263,000 were in Nagasaki, including 240,000 Japanese residents, 9,000 Japanese soldiers, and 400 prisoners of war. It is estimated that between 40,000 and 75,000 people died immediately following the atomic explosion, while another 60,000 people suffered severe injuries. Total deaths by the end of 1945 may have reached 80,000.
The decision to use the second bomb was made on August 7, 1945 on Guam. Its use was calculated to indicate that the United States had an endless supply of the new weapon for use against Japan and that the United States would continue to drop atomic bombs on Japan until the country surrendered unconditionally. 
On August 14, Japan surrendered. Journalist George Weller was the "first into Nagasaki" and described the mysterious "atomic illness" (the onset of radiation sickness) that was killing patients who outwardly appeared to have escaped the bomb's impact. Controversial at the time and for years later, Weller's articles were not allowed to be released until 2006.

Nagasaki bomb Wikimedia Commons small
Fat Man :: Nagasaki, August 9th 1945

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REPORTS ENORMOUS DESTRUCTION

The Event at 8:16am on August 6th 1945 in Hiroshima, Japan
On August 6, 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima. The bomb was known as "Little Boy", a uranium gun-type bomb that exploded with about thirteen kilotons of force. At the time of the bombing, Hiroshima was home to 280,000-290,000 civilians as well as 43,000 soldiers. Between 90,000 and 166,000 people are believed to have died from the bomb in the four-month period following the explosion. The U.S. Department of Energy has estimated that after five years there were perhaps 200,000 or more fatalities as a result of the bombing, while the city of Hiroshima has estimated that 237,000 people were killed directly or indirectly by the bomb's effects, including burns, radiation sickness, and cancer.

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0916:02 (8:16:02 AM Hiroshima time): After falling nearly six miles in forty-three seconds, Little Boy explodes 1,968 feet above the Dr. Shima’s Clinic, 550 feet away from the aiming point of the Aioi Bridge. Nuclear fission begins in 0.15 microseconds with a single neutron, initiating a supercritical chain reaction that increases the temperature to several million degrees Fahrenheit hotter than the surface of the sun at the time the bomb casing blows apart. The yield is 12.5-18 Kt (best estimate is 15 Kt). 
It is the peak of the morning rush hour in Hiroshima. Above the city, the fireball is rapidly expanding. 

.1 seconds: The fireball has expanded to one hundred feet in diameter combined with a temperature of 500,000°F. Neutrons and gamma rays reach the ground. The ionizing radiation is responsible for causing the majority of the radiological damage to all exposed humans, animals and other biological organisms.
.15 seconds: The superheated air above the ground glows. A woman sitting on steps on the bank of the Ota river, a half a mile away from ground zero, instantly vaporizes.
0.2-0.3 seconds: Intense infrared energy is released and instantly burns exposed skin for miles in every direction. Building roofing tiles fuse together. A bronze Buddha statue melts, and even granite stones. Roof tiles fuse together, wooden telephone poles carbonize and become charcoal-like. The soft internal organs (viscera) of humans and animals are evaporated. The blast wave propagates outward at two miles per second or 7,200 miles per hour.
1.0 second and beyond: The fireball reaches its maximum size, approximately 900 feet in diameter. The blast wave slows to approximately the speed of sound (768 miles per hour). The temperature at ground level directly beneath the blast (hypocenter) is at 7,000° F. The mushroom cloud begins to form.
The blast wave spreads fire outward in all directions at 984 miles per hour and tears and scorches the clothing off every person in its path. The blast wave hits the mountains surrounding Hiroshima and rebounds back. Approximately 60,000 out of the city's 90,000 buildings are demolished by the intense wind and firestorm.
Approximately 525 feet southwest from the hypocenter, the copper cladding covering the dome of the Industrial Products Display Hall is gone, exposing the skeleton-like girder structure of the dome. However, most of the brick and stonework of the building remains in place.
The ground within the hypocenter cools to 5,400°F. The mushroom cloud reaches a height of approximately 2,500 feet. Shards of glass from shattered windows are imbedded everywhere, even in concrete walls. The fireball begins to dim but still retains a luminosity equivalent to ten times that of the sun at a distance of 5.5 miles.
Nuclear shadows appear for the first time as a result of the extreme thermal radiation. These shadows are outlines of humans and objects that blocked the thermal radiation. Examples are the woman who was sitting on the stairs near the bank of the Ota River. Only the shadow of where she sat remains in the concrete. The shadow of a man pulling a cart across the street is all that remains in the asphalt. The shadow of a steel valve wheel appears on a concrete wall directly behind it because the thermal radiation was blocked by the outline of the wheel.
Russell Gackenbach, the navigator aboard Necessary Evil, at a distance of 15 miles from the atomic blast, is illuminated by light so bright that, even with his protective goggles on, he could have read the fine print of his pocket Bible.
On the ground, the firestorm continues to rage within an area which had now grown to over a mile wide. A gruesome, raging red and purple mass begins to rise in the sky. The mushroom column sucks superheated air, which sets fire to everything combustible. Bob Caron likens the sight to "a peep into Hell.”
A coded message drafted by Parsons is sent to General Thomas Farrell at Tinian. It stated: “Clear cut, successful in all aspects. Visible effects greater than Alamogordo. Conditions normal in airplane following delivery. Proceeding to base."
Enola Gay circles Hiroshima a total of three times beginning at 29,200 feet and climbing towards 60,000 feet before heading for home. It was 368 miles from Hiroshima before Caron reported that the mushroom cloud was no longer visible. 

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THE WILD GOD OF THE WORLD

Longest days, the Summer Solstice this past week, the Strawberry moon, and rain rain rain. Saturday a wet market CSA produce pickup.

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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.

USGS.12340500.82871.00060..20180422.20180621.log.0.p50.pres.gifUSGS.12340500.19080601.20170614..0.peak.pres.gif


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.
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Hurt Hawks

I
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.

II
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
Implacable arrogance.
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

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LISTENING TO THAT WHICH WANTS

"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."

Anni Albers

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THE OPTIONS

In other news worth noting . . . writing in the journal Science, Guy Midgley of Stellenbosch University in South Africa warned that the options for humanity are becoming severely restricted. . .”Habitat loss may soon mean half the world’s insects, and many plants and animals as well, could find themselves without their familiar home ranges.

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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

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LIGHT SURROUNDS IN MYSTERY

Speechless beneath . . . .

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Entering
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Inside
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Site Specific work Sky Pesher 2005 by James Turrell at the Walker Art Center.

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HIGH WATER

Warm weather and rain and above average snow pack = lots of water rushing down the river corridor. 25,000 cfs of muddy brown water with debris, mud and the burnt logs from last summers fires. The Clark Fork reached flood stage this week racing past between the dikes below our place. What a marvelous thing; water alive, water in motion, water free and water wet.


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A SENSE OF EXCITMENT

“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

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THE PRESS OF MY FOOT

This past four weeks has seen that not-yet-spring | no-longer-winter weather come and go across the intermountain west. A high of 58˚F, low of 21˚F with a mean just below 40˚F day & night. The relative humidity has been about 74% more or less but that should change with daylight now more than 13½ hours. The trails are soft and muddy in places this time of year. It’s a new moon today. When was the last time your naked feet touched the earth ‽

“The press of my foot to the earth springs a hundred affections.”

Walt Whitman

April_Weather

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MERIDIAN LINES

It’s Easter Sunday soon; it follows this week, from the 40 days of fasting or Lent that conclude on Maundy Thursday (Last Supper / Passover), followed by Good Friday & Holy Saturday . . .the resurrection of Jesus, which Easter celebrates, is a foundation of the Christian faith.” wiki. And Easter is a moveable feast whose date is determined by the seasonal movements of the earth and sun . . . bringing in, here in the northern hemisphere anyway, spring, the Bunny and the eggs, those ancient symbols of new life and rebirth. They appeared in our backyard welcomed in the grass and changing light.
The moveable feast needed to be fixed to a date and so there are the Meridiana Lines and pinholes in the ceilings of churches like the Gnomon of Saint-Sulpice . . . light, the movements of the earth and sun, and spring. It was careful observation of a pinhole of light across a meridian line that allowed Johannes Kepler to understand that the planets in our solar system move in ellipses, not circles.

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SPRING EQUINOX

This morning was the spring equinox; day and night being equal . . . now daylight is longer than night and my snow piles are melting away.

“I’m so scared. I’m so scared of dying without ever being really seen. Can you understand?”

David Foster Wallace | Infinite Jest

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Spring Melt in the Alleyway at toMAKE™
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Morning Piece

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MY GARDEN SEEDS

I take such pleasure in saving seeds from my garden harvests; folding in my hands the dried and mysterious code, and then the planting back into the composted soil in the spring. Little delights me more than this simple and economic act . . . to see the seeds return year after year. I hope to never be a criminal because of my garden seeds.

“Seeds have the power to preserve species, to enhance cultural as well as genetic diversity, to counter economic monopoly and to check the advance of conformity on all its many fronts.”

Michael Pollan | Second Nature: A Gardener's Education

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Corn Seeds 2017

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EVERYTHING IS A MIRACLE

“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.”

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Spring flow on Heron’s Island :: Clark’s Fork of the Columbia :: Downtown Missoula, Montana

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NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOUR STRAVA TIME

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 Parks & Recreation Open Space

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Missoula, Montana Open Space Lands

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THE #EarthToo MOVEMENT

The bulletin board in the alleyway got a facelift with the Year of the Brown Earth Dog cards (did you receive yours?) and some Bansky. Always more alley news to come. On my run this morning I saw the heron, so I too stop’d . . . just below Higgings Street bridge in a side channel . . . stop’d still and watching, listening, fishing, being stil.

‘OH, MY POLITICAL POSTS ARE ANNOYING YOU? Sorry, I assumed the future of THE EARTH was worth discussing.’

The Magna Carta Of American Environmental Law Is Under Siege . . . “Citizens need to stop being passive. They need to put pressure on their elected officials, letting them know they are aware that selfish interests and greedy gluttons are pushing an agenda that is not in their best interests or that of their children’s best interests and they are not going to stand for it anymore. What does America desperately need?  There needs to be a #MeToo movement started for the environment.” —Michael V. Finley

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The Bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™ :: end of February

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YEAR OF THE BROWN EARTH DOG

2018 is the Chinese Year of the Brown Earth Dog. This lunar New Year starts February 16th 2018 and ends on February 4th 2019. And Lent started this week (what is your Lenten practice?); as noted on the toMake™ calendar.
I’m on the letterpress printing Year of the Brown Earth Dog postcards. If you don’t get one in the mail shortly please be sure to eMail me with your current address and I’ll get one sent.

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Design, layout and photopolymer plate for letterpress printed postcards
Year of the Dog

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AS LONG AS YOU'RE DANCING

This being ‘The Weather Report’ I thought I should address the weather in the toMake™ Missoula valley. During the past 12 months we saw a high of 100˚F and a low of -7.1˚F, approx. 20 in. of precipitation and some peak winds of 30+ knts. The most interesting was the summer; hot dry and smoky. There was 12 weeks where the weather was dominated by cloudless, but smokey (from nearby fires), noticeably low humidity, little change in the barometric pressure, and little or no rainfall. Remember to dance if you want to break the rules.

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.

Mary Oliver

MissoulaWeather

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SO THIS IS WINTER

This week is the Winter Solstice, longest nights of the year. And it is also the Fourth Sunday of Advent [Love] tomorrow. The Equation of Time is 4min 17sec fast. The 2018 Calendar from toMake™ is in the works. We found all this new snow this morning. Along the river, after a bit, mine were the only tracks beside the deer, the rabbits and other small peoples . . . quiet/hushed all the way out to the gate by the railroad tracks; a snowy eight miles. ‘So this is winter’ with the sun now rising at 8:15 MST and days 8hrs 32min. long. Just two more winter share markets, but then comes spring!


“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


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LONG NIGHTS

It was nice to see the ‘Made Faire’ with all the local vendors but I didn’t get anything, too cold and I was much the more interested in the Christmas Concert at the University Congregational Church with Judith in the choir. The two major attractions (inner story of the dark season and light, and the outer hustle of consumerism and appearances) here side by side. At church I do get a bit tired of the same readers all the time, making it appear that the church is more of a Junior HS in-group than it is in reality. And I shouldn’t complain because it was really nice concert with choir, orchestra and bells. I just feel more and more an outsider these days with so little success as an artist, declined entry in shows and residencies, and clearly excluded from the local art and environmental organizations . . . . Perhaps things will be different, passing through this dark season into that opportunity and presence the abundance of the world of Joy and Beauty brings to us. I like Advent, and this week marks the days of the Long Night Moon (days just 8hrs and 34min long) and the Earliest Sun Sets (4:47pm Missoula).


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ALLEY ACTIVITY

. . . and in the alley news :: Trump and the Triumph of Fear, the Future of the BLM?, Democracy on the Line, Fake News, the Rage of White Folk, the Succession Movement & Education, Taking a Knee, and and and Climate Denialism Kills.


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SUNDAY BESIDE THE CREEK

We took our Sunday walk along the Rattlesnake Creek and it was slow, quiet, enveloping, the present moment ours. We had to stop and said nothing or what we said was forgotten in the creek corridor being washed downstream with the leaves and the rocks and the wind. On the way back it was cold in the early evening shade, days are shorter now; less than 11 hours of daylight and growing shorter every day.

“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


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the Image Gallery is online

A lot has happened since I last posted to this blog… too much recount but in coming days I’ll try. I’ve made some images available for friends in several folders. They tell the story of several memorable events and trips. The image gallery is located here.

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July 8th I completed the Beaverhead 55K Ultra run; a 35 miles adventure along the continental divide between Idaho and Montana.

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August 21st I drove to the Mount Borah trailhead in the Lost Creek Valley of Idaho to experience the total eclipse of the sun.

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September 28th I hiked the 22 mile Dawson-Pitamaken loop in Glacier-Waterton NP for my 68th birthday.

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October 6-7-8 we delighted in the wedding celebration of our son Nate and now daughter-in-law Ursula.


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practicing

When life presents the inevitable challenges and disruptions, as it is currently doing, it is the personal practice(s) that become so important. It is too late in the game to start, only the hopefully long and fully embedded practice(s) can help and help they do. I meditate & sit, do a morning piece and I run. This past weekend I managed a beautiful ten mile trail race on single track in Lolo with 2,000 of elevation up and then down. My legs got a bit tired on the downhill so I slowed carefully and took in beauty of a cold spring rain. I’m practicing still.



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The Creek is Flooding

All this muddy rushing water in my (our) life right now. I know the cottonwoods thrive on this nutrient rich high water, likewise the flooded fields. Just look at the deLight in the colors dancing beside the creek I ran past earlier today. Stop’d to admire the flow. Our lives are rushing past, swept up in an inquisition of petty and malicious gossip, the true smallness of a small town. But all this water, a flooding in the basement, ruined books and the stench of mildew and mold … and the cottonwoods and willows dancing along the creeks’ high waters. YA) water; I am carried by this beauty. I fear not the smallness of this town, but it hurts nevertheless.

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.


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Waters Beneath

The Parsonage, I am told on authority, has been experiencing an unusual amount of flooding in the basement. The Colville River (and the Chewelah Creek system), more or less a drainage ditch on behalf of the valley wheat farmers, is quite high. Water is really an amazing force; THE element that gets larger when colder. Think about this little detail for a minute. This expanding and contracting accounts for much of the dynamic forces that shape the planet, crushing rocks. One night when, as building and grounds manager in a Catskill resort, as a winter flooding was coming down the Panther Kill I was awoken by a deep low sound I’d never heard before. In the morning I discovered that massive boulders, some 20 and more feet tall, had been carried down the creek in the flooding. Well, water changes things. The basement flood at the Parsonage in Chewelah reminds me of the Derby Street community that sits atop a buried east bay creek in Berkeley. High waters bring flooding to their basements as well. Derby Street II Waters Beneath, a multi-matrix lithograph, is a response to the waters in motion beneath us.

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Equal but Slow

This morning, 3:19am MDT, was the Vernal Equinox, day and night being equal in length … a waxing gibbous moon and the EOT at -7:24 slow … the sun transiting toMake™ studio at 1:43pm MDT, rising at 7:38am and setting at 7:48pm … the meaninglessness of DST persisting. Melting snows and high turbulent waters. I am sad today about the ongoing loss and consumption of beauty and wildness.

"The most intimate thing we can do is to allow people we love most see us at our worst. At our lowest. At our weakest. True intimacy happens when nothing is perfect.” Amy Harmon, The Song of David

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between seasons

Between the seasons, I think that is where we are right now, somedays melting and raining and others snowing and cold … as I started to say, between brings up all the unsettled and unresolved. I was out and about and pass’d my old voice teacher, the most wonderful of radiant voices, and we got talking and spoke of the practice room. YA) the practice room. Returning again and again. What is it I have intended to do this lifetime ?

“…I seemed to do none of the things I intended to do — I didn’t seem to be quite present anywhere —” Georgia O’Keeffe, in a letter to Margaret Kiskadden

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snow moon

It’s the full moon; the full snow moon. And we have snow, lots of wet snow! The EOT is slow at -14min 15sec. … because we orbit round about the sun not in a circle but eclipse. Local noon today at the Parsonage is at 12:05 PST. The sun rises at 7:04 and sets at 5:07 with about 10 hrs and 3 minutes of daylight. Local noon today at toMAKE™ in Missoula is at 12:51 MST. The sun rises at 7:46 and sets at 5:55 with 10 hrs and 9 minutes of daylight. Missoula is so far west (36 minutes or 6 minutes into PST) of local mean time (MST) that it should be in the PST; this means that evenings in Missoula lat a long time in the summer.

“There are stars in your dark side brighter than the sun.” Andrea Gibson, Hook Line

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analemma for toMAKE™ February 10th ©steven r holloway

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