Southern Escarpment Collage Essay

We sit at the edge of the world, and smell distant fire making its way through the air. Sun and water diffuse each other to form a rainbow over the distant bluffs. Calm. The little pebbles that were so noisy to walk upon now remain silent beneath our quietness. The world is still, aside from the intermittent patches of sagebrush and desert buckwheat rustling as quietly as our breathing.


We have explored this place.  In the morning we set out on a long walk, snaking over bluffs and valleys, allowing our landscapes of thought and place to merge. Passing over, under, and through a barbed wire fence we wander up a grassy ravine toward a cliff. Droplets fall on our dirty heads and birds cry.


We take refuge from the storm under an outcropping, allowing ourselves to fall deeper into the trance. As the space between droplets increases we venture from the cave opening, pulled by the landscape up the cliff, over ridges and along the curving swales and ripples of the land. We come together quietly in an open circle of pebbles, taking our places to listen, beginning to feel our surroundings as we unclench our thinking minds and allow our senses to guide our perceptions.


Everything is round, flowing channels twisting and circulating, expanding and contracting.  It is easy to see the movement of water here. The rock escarpments break in tessellations, spreading and scattering. Sagebrush, grasses, bushes at edges of elevations, reeds and forbs in the potholes.

Everything grows in rings and patches.  We sit in a similar manner and are here.

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