Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The years keep on turning, and in commemoration, Syme and I hopped in his Escort and drove down highway 89 toward the phenomenon called Page, Arizona the day before yesterday.
We did this trip last year on a whim and enjoyed the hell out of the bizzare and picturesque drive, so we did it again. This time, it was colder, for the most part, earlier, and of course, less spontaneous. The places we visited took on a more deliberate air, and made us stop and take inventory of the events and souls that made up the participants in the adventure. In some ways, we were bewildered at how little had changed or progressed in the past year, and in others, we knew that something had happened, but it was hard to put a finger on exactly what.
The dam was still there, and so was the steel bridge spanning the redrock canyon between the western and eastern table lands above the Coloradee. Page still had a parade of churches dedicated to God and pandering to man and a whole grundle of differently flavored breads at the Safeway, ready for purchase and consumption.
What was the difference between the churches, Safeway, and really, me?
Not a whole lot.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

As the night of winter lengthens and the Pleiades drift through the darkness at the heart of Taurus at a time when most can see them, I have been glad to listen to songs of the season and drink in the cheer of our children. I'm sleeping more than I normally do in the summer, and my work is taking more hours of waking time than I'd prefer. What can I do about that? Be grateful that I have a couple of jobs and children to support.
Nevertheless, I was glad to get out to the mountain with Ryan on Sundee, up to the Boulder to traipse and cast both mind and eye from ridge to tree, and listen to some water run down toward the desert.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Today was a beautiful day; blue skies and warm temperatures kept at arm's length the inevitability of autumn's demise at the hand of the iceman who cometh.
It had to happen. There hasn't been much success in the fishing holes close to home, and this school year has been and is being a bugger, so Ryan and I lit for Moab and the slickrock and bookstores associated therewith.
We rode a trail, drank some brews, saw across divine vistas and drank at a trough of beauty undiminished even by divisive politics and rampant commerce.
And why did I not record the experience with photos of other than a raw juice drink in a bright cup? It's so hard to describe the colors, panoramas and junipers sometimes. I don't have the heart to compose the shots right now; not today at least. Dumb cameras, anyway. Besides- I left the danged thing in the car with the rest of the dross.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Riding into town from work today, this will be followed fair quickly by a full moon through intermittant clouds.
Ah, like lemonade on a hot, dry day...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Friday, October 17, 2008

Dear God, whose name I do not know...thank you for my life. I forgot how big!! Thank you, thank you for my life.

-From Joe Versus the Volcano, a little-appreciated tretise on things in general.
Posted in Cooke City, Montana.

Monday, September 22, 2008

The family had a splendid afternoon up Hell Hole on Sunday afternoon, taking a five mile hike and a picnic spot by storm.
The fall is beautiful and the maple leaves are falling fast, this whole seasonal change thing looks pretty serious.
Happy fall to you.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Today's political carton from Pat Bagley at the Salt Lake Trib.
If this one doesn't get nationwide print, I'll be a monkey's uncle.
Or a mouse's.
OH, my heart hurts...

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Much to be seen and done on this final day of the summer.
Ryan and I wound our way up the canyon to the other side of the range early this morning, finding a sunrise, a hawk, and running close to at least a couple of elk bugling back and forth across a ridge line.
We took Drie and Amy over the mountain in the afternoon to eat in Helper at the Balancing Rock Pub, taking the scenic route both ways. Things are coloring up and the grass dying back as the frost of winter comes down the mountains with the retreating sun's advance southward.
That's what makes the fall a time of deep magic, the interplay that can be found between heaven and earth and between the inhabitants of the ground feeling that change happening.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Mother Nana was over on Sundee and took time for some reading and conversation. It's a good, rare thing to to have her here, and we appreciate it dearly.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

My Uncle Kelly came by this morning to say hi and drop off a few bags of much appreciated intra-family hand-me-downs, and in the process, made the whole family happy.
He hung out for a while and Jesse and I showed him the local cafe.
Jesse thinks he had fun down there, and we're glad he came by.

Friday, September 12, 2008

The air was clear and the fish out in the middle of the lake. Not much action from the shore as I halfheartedly tied a few different artifacts to the end of the line. I really just enjoyed the sights and cool temperature, and had fun just being there.
The days are getting shorter, though, and that means that the time for autumn fishing is coming on.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

We couldn't get any coal at the mine today, so we wasted gas going around the mountain this afternoon.
Shoulda gotten more wood, but sure enjoyed the fish and moose.
Good fishing and moose watching.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Yup. That's ice, from the tarp on top of my truck.
Ice. This morning.
School started a couple of weeks ago, and I've had a time of it rebalancing myself to having the two jobs at once after a relatively unconfined summer. My children, blog, relationships and soul have suffered for the process. I can tend toward the manic-depressive side, especially at these junctures.
I realized that I've not written in a long time this evening, in part because a dear friend from the other side of the world sent me a kind word and wish yestereve. That had the effect of bringing me to reflect upon my tendency to wrap up into a ball and disappear from the world at different levels sometimes.
For those who don't know me in realtime, or have had no contact for a while, I am an English teacher at a rural alternative high school and spend my evenings responding to the English homwork of students at the Utah Electronic High School, an online highschool sponsored by the state of Utah. There is much patience required in both jobs, and energy by the gobs is spent just keeping my wits and cool at levels capable of keeping my keel from toppling over much of the time.
I have worked in the field of 'at-risk' education for most of the past fifteen years, and I love it. I have enjoyed the interaction of good human beings who have been, for the most part, mislabled. I have benefitted from their talents and wisdom much more than I have taught them, at times.
It's hard work, though. Teaching involves much more than just teaching. Especially in the case of my dear students.
At any rate, I do withdraw sometimes, and most of the time, I have a hard time even recognizing that act.
So if I don't post for a while, that might be at least some of what's going on. I'm sure glad I have such good friends and that person above all people, Diedre, to keep me moored to a good port.
I'll have put up a couple other posts tonight before I go horizontal. I really am grateful for all I have, and I'm really glad that I have this little blog. It's a good place to connect, from time to time. I think that's good for me.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

We had a wee family party anoche, and here're the great grand children of my dear Mimi, all bunched together and missing only four or five unable to attend.
Though the rain and recent cold front left all a little chilled, the visitations went well.
It was nice to see everyone and much sugar was consumed upon childlike cravings.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Sometimes, when I look at her, I can't help but take a thousand pictures.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Way too cute.
Not much time for long walks, or even much in the way of fishing, but a night was spent in the cradle of the Beartooths and good places and people were visited.

A wee vid for y'all:

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Yellowstone, quick trip.
Left 0300 on Saturday, returned 2200 on Sunday.
Will I make it past the first day of prep for the new school year?
Only time will tell.
Oh, dear. Life is just too short, and the world beckons.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

This is some of the mundane part of our life in the little house on the high desert.
The bathroom has needed a gut and replacement since we moved in eight years ago, and this week I have a couple of blessed, talented friends helping me in the task.
When will it be finished? Better said, when will it be useable?
Soon. It had better be very soon.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

On the Skyline yestereve, Drie, Amy, Ryan and I went on a lark away from the cares of the valley. There were quite a few bucks holding forth on the ridges as we crawled along in the 4-Runner.
Things are going well this summer; very nice, but way too quickly.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Drie, Jesse and I took a long drive to and from Fillmore today, heading on out there to pick up a few things to tote around for Drie's mom.
Glad we had air conditioning on this trip!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Another quest was undertaken yesterday, with fish both landed and broken off, views both terrible and majestic, strange phenomenon and blessed happenstance, all during one complete circuit in the midst of a summer's day.

Along with the undeniably good we experienced, we were startled on our way by an act of cultural and spiritual terrorism perpetrated upon Torrey, Utah. The old LDS building, erected in 1928 to replace the even older log meetinghouse (still standing and acting as a Daughters of the Utah Pioneers Hall), had been architecturally bedeviled by the church over the years until it was finally set on a course of demolition sometime this week.
The stones had been hand-worked and placed, made from stone native to the area. Babies were blessed there, marriages performed, consciences piqued and assuaged, wars worried over, loved ones mourned and celebrated, and, well, God worshipped. But no more. It was knocked down by rude machinery, without regard to the hallowed place, sentiments, or material.
The world keeps turning, and as I heave a sigh, I can only hope that we'll be all right. Humans can be so unfeeling, at times.

Ah, but all is not lost on the vast sea of human endeavor. Ryan and I took a chance detour onto the high desert in the midst of high summer, and insodoing, we met good people doing great things. At the Mesa Farm Market in Cainesville (Caineville on the map and to modren folk), Randy Ramsley, his wife, and a crew of darned fine people do thier thing. They bake bread in an outdoor oven, brew Chiapan coffee, raise goats, organic vegetables, divine herbs, and a generally positive ruckus in and amongst the good people of Wayne County, Utah. This is the view from their kitchen window. O, Lord...

We talked on subjects ranging from paleoantropology to Carl Jung and the impression of the good thinker/worker on the collective and all manner of metaphysics. Randy graciously (and, quite probably, patiently) related his experiences (nosey tourists we were, afterall!) in finding and acquiring the land he works and of the lessons learned so far in a life entered into thoughtfully and deliberately, and of difficulties with working with the seasons whims and the necessities of caring for the earth that cares for us. He spoke of wisdom in action and static knowledge, and seems to know a thing or two about the way things work or, in many cases, fail to work out.
We had a wonderful time with them.

These wild burros called us off of the beaten path again, and into the San Rafael Swell. Mayhaps of the same blood as those who accompanied dear old Everett Ruess. They run the desert now with the antelope and desert sheep, the jackrabbits and coyotes. Onward toward home we went, as he thunder rumbled through the redrock. The rain poured, and nourishing was their effect on the seeds planted in our hearts throughout the live-long day.
On to wisdom in action, and to visions carried to fruition.
Ah, sweet, blissful work.

But there is a difference between knowing the path and walking it.
It might be a little while, yet. I'm a man infirm, in many ways.