Riverbeds and Canyons: Road Less Traveled

zion_narrows_zion_national_park_utahThis is a place of rock, not rocks.  There is one big rock that goes on and on, shaped by the winds.  The rocks I see on the ground are fragments that have been separated  from the mother-rock.  It’s that mother-rock that sends shimmering streams of goose bumps down my arms and legs. 

In parts of the east side of Zion, there seem to be no fragments, only curved formations that follow the patterns of the wind.  These curves join other curves endlessly following canyon walls and though river washes.  In these areas the only way to leave the mother is as a grain of sand pulled from her by the incessant winds or occasional rains.  Swirling ripples, like standing waves, decorate her body.

I walk and scramble through her canyons and riverbeds, lost in the pure joy of beauty.  On the east side of Zion, there are no trails. There is no place to get to, no goal, nothing to strive for and nothing to accomplish.  This is discovery land.  This tree, flower, or rock wall, the one I can touch this moment demands my full attention.  The trees further up the canyon don’t yet exist.  I stop, touch, and wonder at the supreme perfection.  I wander, right and left, forward and back, up and down, leaving tracks that look like the trail of a staggering drunk.  I am drunk; drunk on wonder and gratitude as I reel along the path carved by the wind, over, under, and through the mother-rock.



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Having journeyed to the Far East and Asia over 20 times in the past 20 years, I’ve been intrigued and inspired by the ingenuity, craftsmanship, balance and human spirit that have gone into the making of those works I have seen and collected.

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