Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Words by Greg
Photos by Greg and Trina
A couple of recent warm November afternoons have found us outside, following a crooked line through the desert. We scrambled through brush, clambered over rocks, and squeezed beside it in sandstone channels, doing our best to trace this line of water as it flowed toward us and past us toward bigger rivers. We tromped upward through the deepening rift, while far ahead somewhere lay a source.
Though we set out to discover, we were not intent on discovering a source. Instead we sought only to discover what was there to be discovered. The cold of ice written in shadow. The crisp grasses and bare branches contrasted with bold November blossoms. The spice of willow and sage warmed by sunshine. And the sound of something like silence, but a silence made of shy birds, of dogs in brush, of gravel and stone underfoot, of music made by water pouring into secret pools and pouring out again.
To say that water in the desert is a gift would be to imply that it is given, that it is received. I do not think that water can have this intent, or that a small canyon can show gratitude. I am not water. I am not a canyon. I will try to live and be grateful for water and life in an arid land. On a warm day in late autumn in a small, secret canyon, it is easily done.