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Articles in Category: Tucson

On Returning to Wild Places; On Monarda

interrogating the words to understand the experience

On Returning to Wild Places; On Monarda

“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity.” John Muir.

To return is to go back to a former position, to turn and change direction, go back the way you came. So, a homecoming, Penelope at the end of the Odyssey. But you can speak of returning to a place as soon as the second time you go there, and every time after that. Every time you change direction, go back the way you went that first time, you consolidate that sense of the new place as a place of origin.

Resort is a place you go out to (sortie) again and again. And so I keep resorting to the spring at the top of Mount Lemmon--back there, again there. I keep returning, transforming a resort into a source and base.

Going Out To the Back of Beyond

An Interlude (sort of)

Going Out To the Back of Beyond

My “monastic cell” abode is a little cement box. As a friend put it, “the Tucson broiler is now on.” 100+-degree days for over a month and to be continued through perhaps October, with occasional monsoon reprieves. I don’t turn my cooler on during the day, and it’s not a very effective cooler anyway. Even with blackout curtains on the windows, it’s often in the 90s in my home. Outside, suburbia stretches its grid, curvaceous and eccentric and still a grid. I walk. I miss the easy reach of the Rillito wash I had from my old place, a small strip of wildness and growth to walk to and poke around almost every day.
I lift up mine eyes unto the hills.

This sprawl of city is surrounded by mountains--the Catalinas, the Rincons, the Tucsons, the Santa Ritas. If you drive up to the 9000ft summit of Mount Lemmon, you pass through the range of bioregions you would traverse between Mexico and Canada--all that latitude compressed into contours. There’s even a spring at the top.

And finally, I head for the hills.
This post is not about ketogenic matters, except in a way it is.

Rumi's Urs

spirituality without religion

Rumi's Urs

Today, December 17th, is the 742nd anniversary of Rumi's death. The Sufi community celebrates loved ones' or heroes' death days, or urs, with informal but intentional gatherings in celebration of the life and to reflect on how that life lives on in our own lives. So tonight was different from the normal Thursday night Sufi gatherings.

We shared our favorite Rumi poems, we squeezed a couple of Dances of Universal Peace into the narrow confines of the Little Chapel, we did a couple of zikr practices and a carefully contained dervish whirl.

Interesting to reflect on Rumi's perennial appeal and what an apt representative he is of what we call Sufism.

'They Come in Threes"--a New (to me) Scam/Fraud

please beware of this

'They Come in Threes

When I called my parents in tears when my scooter was stolen two days after my house was broken into, my dad warned me "these things come in threes." He was right.

"How could you have been so gullible/innocent/it's totally obvious that this was fraudulent," etc., etc., said anyone I told the story to after the fact. (Why didn't I discuss with anyone before the fact?)  I don't know, guys. I guess I am highly gullible/trusting. But here's the story, and I hope it may stop someone else from falling prey to this.

"The Art of Losing Isn't Hard to Master"

although it seems like (write it!) like disaster

(with thanks, of course, to Elizabeth Bishop)

I've been going on and on about being the tail wagging the dog, the smile that starts firing happy chemistry. Then my house, and my neighbor on the other side of the duplex, got broken into on Wednesday, and irreplaceable family jewelry was stolen. Today, shopping on the way home from group where we'd been discussing how to wag that dog and create that smile, my scooter was stolen from right beside me as I browsed for a gift for my niece and perhaps a little token of safety.

Law of Attraction specialists, what am I doing that's making this happen?

Avian Sex, and Meditation

meditation's destination/sex&laughter

Avian Sex, and Meditation

My dry yard is feebly dominated by the standing carcass of a wild olive tree. An oleaster, I guess it would have been called. I've seen my neighbor's cat get up in it, but mostly it's a perch for birds, and those mostly doves.

Doves and olives together--symbol of hope since the time of the Flood, when the dove brought back an olive branch to the survivors of the human race in their Ark, a sign that there was dry land (with trees on it) somewhere in reach. The olive branch was a symbol of peace back then all over the Mediterranean and Near/Middle East.

And the doves, ubiquitous pigeons?

Heat, KetoAdaptation; Reading

in which I compare myself to a fridge in hot weather

Heat, KetoAdaptation; Reading

High heat is here. High, dry heat.

Elsewhere, gardeners favor raised beds. Here, contrariwise, we sink them. Cooler, shadier, hold moisture better. I take sacks with me into the river wash and bring home plant debris, horse poop, bat poop, as mulch that is also shade. 

What's alive so easily parches to death; what's already dead doesn't compost because it's just too dry. I love heat, but when it's so high above my body temperature, it makes me wonder if there is after all a "too hot."

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