Monday, March 28, 2011

Early Spring

Spring in the Owen's Valley brought record snowfall to Mammoth Mountain (pushing on to 600 inches this winter) and a brush fire in the canyon west of Big Pine, where I was camped at Baker Creek county campground. I was evacuated (ma'am, you have 15 minutes, do you need any help?) to Pleasant Valley (see photos from last Nov) to get whooped by winds again. So GLAAAAAD to be living in a nice wind-proof trailer. Here's some photos, the red-birch drawing was done in chocolate syrup on paper plate. The gray willow thrashy trunk is a foretaste of the painting/drawings I have been doing and will post soon. The blond cow is unusual, most cows and calves in the pastures around here are black or brick colored. The pond is bucolic. Sunny weather is now forecast for the rest of March and I will be working on my trailer while it lasts ... everything moves outside while we pull extract the icebox and re-insulate -- right now it still has the original insulation from the 1960's: cardboard. Happy spring!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Watershed Wastrel?

Riparian waters are the cradle of life on this planet; we are slowly coming to understand their role in the renewal of all the natural resources we exploit. Western civilisation, the "first world" has focused on end results—unmitigated development of human ingenuity—and has let the sources of life get depleted, wasted, destroyed. As if we wouldn't need them anymore.

Water from the Western Sierra watershed flows down into the Sacramento River delta and waters Sacramento, the central valley and the Bay Area. Water from the Eastern Sierra watershed flows into the basin between the Sierra and the White and Inyo Mountains, and from there is conveyed by aqueduct to water the Los Angeles Greater Metropolitan Area.

All the Federal Bureau of Land Management campgrounds and most of Inyo County's campgrounds are situated beside creeks that drop out of the Sierra side of Owens Valley, Round Valley, and Long Valley. So, I have considered re-titling this blog: "Watershed Wastrel."
But, since all Californians are watershed wastrels, it seems too generic.

Well anyways here's some water pictures....

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ash Wednesday

Remember that from dust you were made, and unto dust you shall return.
_from the service for Impostion of Ashes

By the age of retirement a woman 
should have little in hand, a lot to forgive,
and memories, overwhelming memories.
How else shall I account for my present
condition? Aching gritty joints, floppy flesh,
colorless hair littering floors and solitary
pillow. Now are the days of roots exposed,
grey bark flaking and cold limbs cracking 
off into background loam and leaves.
Lying awake in winter with eyes closed, 
dreaming under the sign of Ashes,
a parade of images more alluring than any
fantasy of future virility and triumph
compels my attention and before me returns
into a luminous warm dark, beckoning.