[A Retrospective] Volcanic dikes criss-cross the landscape at the foot of the Spanish Peaks in northeast New Mexico, creating a texture of rigid, straight line patterns across otherwise rolling hillsides. A dusting of snow accentuates the grave lines and leaves us with a sense of premeditation in the landscape.
[A Retrospective] As though the visualization of short bursts of sonorous tones, the sand dunes align in rhythmic strands, sharply rising before cresting and falling onto the Sonoran Desert floor. Each strand a separate song, its substance variable and subject to the whimsy of the breeze…This elegant rhythm echoes into the atmosphere above where we revel in the incongruity of its silence.
[A Retrospective] Following the vagaries of the landscape’s hues, yellow ochre transitions to burnt sienna, displayed along the dark fractal edges of extruded earth, rising and falling like memories of ancient tidal flows. A solitary ribbon of reflected light gently twists through the Goblin Valley…a smooth, one dimensional, shimmering line flowing molten through the desert…Light’s reflection and absorption defined in the starkness of the Utah desert.
[A retrospective] The seasons of earth are but jitters in the advancing second hand of an eternal clock displayed to our experience in color and evolving climes as the planet turns and wobbles. The color of earth is not a monochrome…light dances on everything in our world as we interpret the changing moods of the dancer…colors, like ideas, may be smothered and covered, but the spirit pervades and the colors of earth are irrepressible, radiating emotively through the drapes of dour seasons.
[A Retrospective] Sometimes conflict in our lives seems to come out of nowhere…unprepared we fixate on the bumps and distractedly look down, losing sight of the steady and constant horizon in the distance. Recognizing the temporary nature of this sort of turbulence is essential to coping with it…just as with the effect of heating the surface of the earth, hot air yields increased pressure as it rises in isolation, creating rolling pockets of dissimilar air, before dissipating in the atmosphere above, eventually vanishing as it runs out of energy…a few bumps here and there, but in the end, the natural state is smooth air…As long as we stay cool, don’t look down, and focus on the horizon, any rough patches will pass and we will be left with only memories of our disquiet and the thrill of riding it out.
“You better not look down
If you want to keep on flyin’
Put the hammer down
Keep it full speed ahead
You better not look back
Or you might just wind up cryin’
You can keep it movin’
If you don’t look down”
~B.B. King, “Better Not Look Down” (Chorus)
[A Retrospective] When light first kisses the atmosphere at local dawn, the vapor suspended in the atmosphere illuminates, revealing the colors of earth as the warming begins. And with that warming comes the wind…whispering across the planet as the warming crust gives a voice to light. It beckons. It calls. It teases. You can be weightless…you can be still…you can be hot…you can be cold. You can fly.
[a retrospective] We all wear mantles. Some of birth, some of profession, some of aspiration. When we shed these clothes and reduce ourselves to the elements that make us who we are, not what we are, we find solace in our every breathing moment. These elements connect our fantastical sense-filled childhood dreams with the reality of our world… all can be reduced to celestial light and the air that surrounds and supports us. Keeping our eyes toward the light that illuminates the pathway ahead, we remain mindful of the opacity of the shadows we cast and seek to reflect more light than we obscure.
[A Retrospective] Seen from afar, all things look smooth and graceful…Approach closer and we find that all things have rough edges. It’s a simple truth that applies to every physical thing…Our proximity dictates our understanding. Shortly after the moment of realization, when our perception mirrors reality, we recognize that the rough edges of time and experience define character and demonstrate beauty in its most natural form…The humanity of Earth is revealed along its edges…
The Earth does not belong to us, but its mysteries are a part of us. To protect the thin and mysterious places on earth is to protect ourselves from the darkest capacities of the human heart and to present an undisturbed place to dream, marvel, wonder, or simply imagine a world alive and unmolested by avarice and desire. The Grand Staircase – Escalante National Monument is one such place…to diminish it, in anyway, reveals the worst in us, cleaving a hole in the delicate protective shield of the Antiquities Act, and breaks faith with our purpose of tending to the earth and rejoicing in its creation.
Please contact your elected officials and tell them to defend the Antiquities Act.
[A retrospective] Drifting on an earthen sea, free-floating stone faces twist and turn, following the sun as its radiant waves sweep across the valley, stirring currents in the sand, warming the air, and unleashing rolling winds to animate the heavens.