Preposterous and precipitous. There’s something about the mountain west that keeps drawing me in. It doesn’t have the blue-green lush humidity of the Appalachians. There’s a lot of sand and dirt and rust brown scrub. Miles of it. Days’ worth of driving of it. You can feel like it will swallow you whole and no one will ever know…But Then! Then…..every once in while some strange formation rises out of the earth with so many contradictions. Pine and aspen cling to these rocks that seem impossibly stacked. Rocks that seem like they could not support life and might even tumble over any day.

I scrambled up Turtle Rock, hand and foot across expanses of rock covered in mint, lime, saffron lichen. I found a resting place and sat aside my pack. I could see miles upon miles of forest and hear the calls of birds over….nothing. Nothing else. The last two weeks had not been kind to me. Summer itself had plateaued adequately after an intensely rough Spring. I was lucky, nervous, and excited to think about the performance I would have in Laramie the next night, but never too excited to forget about the weight of anxiety, inadequacy, grief…but sitting there I felt a calm that I’d been missing. The guru sits on the mountain because on the mountain, nothing can touch you.



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