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Ravens are one of the most impossibly beautiful birds. It’s easy to dismiss them as oversized pesty crows, but the closer you look at them the more you can pick up on the intricacies of their feather patterns and their shifting iridescence.
“Meanwhile the sunsets are mad orange fools raging in the gloom...” -Jack Kerouac Desolation Angels
8:39pm somewhere in I90.
“The great art of life is sensation, to feel that we exist, even in pain.” -Lord Byron
“Hold together, Jack, pass through everything, and everything is one dream, one appearance, one flash, one sad eye, one crystal lucid mystery, one word—Hold still, man, regain your love of life and go down from this mountain and simply be—be—be the infinite fertilities of the one mind of infinity, make no comments, complaints, criticisms, appraisals, avowals, sayings, shooting stars of thought, just ‘flow’, flow, be you all, be you what it is, it is only what it always is—Hope is a word like a snow-drift— This is the Great Knowing, this is the Awakening, this is Voidness— So shut up, live, travel, adventure, bless and don’t be sorry.” —Jack Kerouac, Desolation Angels
“He continually hears the reassuring rapturous rush of silence, except near creeks, he continually is aware of the light material the world is made of, and never discourses, nor makes signs for meaning, nor complains a breath, but nibbles and paws, and lumbers along snags paying no attention to inanimate things or animate—His big mouth chew-chews in the night, I can hear it across the mountain in the starlight. Soon he will come out of the fog, huge, and come and stare in my window with big burning eyes—He is Avalokitesvara the Bear. I am waiting for him.” —Jack Kerouac, Desolation Angels
"Nothing could be more lonely and nothing more beautiful than the view at nightfall across the prairies to these huge hill masses, when the lengthening shadows had at last merged into one and the faint after-glow of the red sunset filled the west." —Theodore Roosevelt
I hope you can look up today and appreciate the infinite expanse of empty chaos that waits on the other end of the couple miles of plant exhaust that keeps us all alive and maybe appreciate the incomprehensible odds of it all. Life on Earth is far greater than humans ever will become and will continue long after we’re gone, but I sure hope we don’t totally fuck it up anyways. Happy Earth Day 🌍
Dreaming of the day I can go back and find these elusive and hardy cats on the barren bluffs of South Dakota’s badlands.
This week the Army Corps of Engineers granted a final permit for Polymet’s (a Canadian company) proposed copper-nickel mine in Minnesota’s fragile and ecologically rich northern wetlands. The metals stored underneath these wetlands are in the form of sulfide minerals, which can release sulphuric acid and other toxic byproducts into waterways during the extraction process. Nearly 1000 acres of precious wetlands on the border of the Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness, one of the most intact and visited wilderness areas in the nation, will be decimated to create this mine. In a landscape dominated by interconnected waterways, the idea that a sulfide mineral mining operation built on wetlands will be able to contain the toxic byproducts is completely asinine. It is not too late to stop this through litigation. Minnesotans, please contact your representatives and our new governor Tim Walz and let them know that the health of our cherished northwoods is not worth the short term economic gain for a foreign company. This is an issue that needs to be organized around, marched for—anything that can be done to put pressure on the people we have elected to represent our ideals. My friend @benjaminolsonphotography has partnered with @friendsbwcaw and together are trying to bring awareness to this monumental issue, but it will take the collective force of the people to stop this absolute travesty of a mine from threatening the most beautiful place in the world.
A great gray owl takes off from a gnarled snag while actively hunting on a snowy evening in Minnesota’s northern bog forests. December 23, 2015.
Canine tracks in the northern Bridger Mountains. March 21, 2019.