Monday, July 31, 2006
We greeted familiar faces besides a roaring fire: fellow tribal wanderers seeking respite at The Place prior to an expedition to the proposed Pisgah clear-cut site.
When will we realize these puppet politicians of course have nary an ethic, let alone a land ethic? It is up to us. Bickering over which mouth to feed the two-headed monster is a waste. Are the brainwashed masses really content to say it’s “the lesser of two evils?”
I awoke to startling visions: turning to catch a Native-American figure gazing at me from the shadows of rhododendron. I look again, but the figure is gone. And in my mind is left a strange silhouette... of who, of what, I can’t tell.
A Sunday morning run followed: a 20 mile pilgrimage to The Other Place. Skinny Dip is a good way to cool off after the push up Seniard Ridge. The harvest: blueberries to cure a bonk, sarvis berries in the sack.
Tonight I had the dream for dinner. Sarvis berry salsa atop a bed of locally grown kale, sweet potatoes, blackbeans, cheese and tortilla. Ahhhh, Mamacita, who’s your daddy?
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
I caught a ride, we caught some air
He's never gonna cut his hair
It takes more time to make a fake
We night swam down in the lake
Washed the dirt off our intentions
Prattle on 'bout bad inventions
I came as ice, I came as a whore
I came as advice that came too short
(lyrics by modest mouse)
Monday, July 24, 2006
Sunday, July 16, 2006
it started with a sarvis harvest, and ommegang ale, and water; water cold enough to jar one's brain loose.
it continued down past the parkway. to farlow gap where only a weekend ago, a half-marathon loop was derived for those deprived of blackberries, rattlesnakes and swimming holes...down daniel ridge, to the genesis of the davidson river, and into the water; water still cold enough to jar one's brain loose.
along long branch to soak in the sunshine of picklesimer fields. and through a pine forest and fern paradise. up cat gap where overburdened trail-side bushes await to force-feed their sweets to unsuspecting wanderers.
buckberries, blackberries, and blueberries for dessert. then to camp along king creek. into a wild gorge, 100 foot cascades, a temperate rainforest jungle!
morning: the dark majestic dreamland behind, down into town for breakfast at kelly's. then across the college campus and up rich mountain doing god's work as bethel baptists say.
into dupont without a map; memory alone and a few mistakes to make a 30 mile day a little longer. over mine mountain and along the green river. ball to the wall up to camp greenville.
mind the no trespass signs. thoreau: but possibly the day will come when it will be partitioned off into so-called pleasure grounds, in which a few will take a narrow and exclusive pleasure only, --when fences shall be multiplied, and man-traps and other engines invented to confine men to the public road, and walking over the surface of God's earth shall be construed to mean trespassing on some gentleman's grounds. to enjoy a thing exclusively is commonly to exclude yourself from the true enjoyment of it. let us improve our opportunities, then, before the evil days come.
tumbling down to rainbow falls. and tumbling still down, down, down to the chambers of the middle saluda. now up, up, up el lieutenant. the sun is getting low, but the homestretch is here.
it ended with cashew tofu stir-fry, a hot shower, eraser, affligem tripel ale... and hoping i didn't brain my damage too severely.
Swimming in the sky,
Watching clouds slowly passing by.
The horizon is so near,
This love of water I hold so dear.
Lying on the smooth stones,
Absorbing warmth into my bones.
The froth and frenzy of the falls
Has scrambled my mind beyond recall.
Oh, to spend a lazy day
With a friend(or two) who loves to play!
We'll watch the sun down in the west,
Then sit by the fire and take our rest.
Glorious things we can see,
If only we just let it be.
Our lives will flow as the river below
Murmuring the peace of our soul's echo.
What else can we do but spend our lives enthralled in love?
Dancing our joy as the rains fall from above?
Each day should be lived as though its the only one,
All you have to do is blink to see it gone.
-a meandering bear
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon,
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers,
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not. -Great God! I'd rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.
-William Wordsworth (1807)
Monday, July 10, 2006
Things I ponder when dissolved into the flood of our feeding fury:
This man loved to walk. The champion pedestrian of the 19th century was walking 25 miles a day at the age of 88 when he was struck by an automobile in New York City. Bedridden, he died two years later.
"I'm a rabbit in your headlights
You got money to burn....
Fat bloody fingers are sucking your soul away....
Away, away, away,
Away, away, away."
Friday, July 07, 2006
"Until I obtain sufficient awakening, I will not leave the mountain..."
-Saicho, 8th century founder of Tendai Buddhism. His resolution of seclusion on Mount Hiei in Kyoto, Japan gave rise to the Marathon Monks.
...the more they stay the same.
Back to work in the Mountain Bridge Wilderness.
Monday, July 03, 2006
The American majority is enslaved with ignorance and indifference. There is an alternative that's achievable thru education and everyday action. Consider turning off the tube, getting communal with the neighbors and nature, civil disobedience, making rather than buying etc. And I will share in my efforts here...
"it has to start somewhere,
it has to start sometime,
what better place than here,
what better time than now?"
-rage against the machine
Sunday, July 02, 2006
"I was out walking in the early morning. All of a sudden I felt very uplifted, more uplifted than I had ever been. I remember I knew timelessness and spacelessness and lightness. I did not seem to be walking on the earth...but...every flower, every bush, every tree, seemed to wear a halo. There was a light emanation around everything and flecks of gold fell like slanted rain through the air...The most important part was not the phenomena: the important part of it was the realization of the oneness of all creation..." -Peace Pilgrim
Thoreau's essay "Walking" fell into my lap this evening on the porch. It is certainly worth a read (and a reread), if you have the time.
And through the course of my studies, I happened upon a hero I had never heard of before. Perhaps you will find the story of Mildred Norman Ryder AKA Peace Pilgrim as inspiring as I have.
down mountain i go kickin'
where lucky fools may find
berries ripe for the pickin'
below that magic line!
...And that's how odysseys start with just a little incentive: to enjoy the first mountain-grown sweets of the season at approximately 2000 ft. above sea level. But as always, there's more.
Pack on and out the door, down the Frank Coggins to Rim of the Gap, oh there's work to be done! But that will start Monday. Through the labrynth to Pinnacle Pass:
Listen to waves and wind
Whisper to creation,
To the bully and blind,
Choking on the fury,
This eternal language,
Lost to atrophied ears,
May it be understood!
"Look at mother nature on the run," and thank God for Neil Young. May we all get a chance to lie naked on a rock outcrop gazing up into the heart of a thunderstorm. It's quite something.
And the aroma of the yucca in bloom! And the song of cicadas: so loud, they're in your head begging for an open mind to escape. And yes, the blueberries and blackberries, and a dip in ol' oil camp creek too.
Then an evening stroll to join gypsies at River Falls Lodge for a wonderful contra to shake out the miles and make with the smiles. And Uwharrie and I wander onwards into the firefly night...
Come morning we awake to breakfast in the awesome path of mother nature's run. Trees are broken and tossed like twigs, boulders skipped like pebbles. Appearing innocent, the instigator trickles down its cataclysmic canyon. A mole tunnels through the churned landscape.
The mudslide isn't a place where I want to linger for long. Too sobering perhaps? Instead we choose immersion in sun and water along the wild Middle Saluda as the afternoon slowly melts away into memory.
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