Wilderness Song - Inspiration Thursday

My Life Shall Be A Little Curling Wave by Everett Ruess

My life shall be a little curling wave
     Gaily racing forth from the great blue sea.
A moment it will sparkle in the sun;
     Jewelled and scintillating it will flash,
Then with a little tinkling tune
     It will shatter on the cool brown sand
And turn to bubbling, milk white foam.
     So, broken, slowly it will retreat, 
Leaving the beach a little smoother
     For the other waves that come.
Storm Point along Lake Yellowstone in Yellowstone National Park, August 2014
A bee and a peony in our yard, June 2014
Geothermal area along the south rim of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone in Yellowstone National Park, May 2013
Mountain Goat near Hidden Lake in Glacier National Park, August 2013
Snow accumulation on the porch railing, December 2013
Wilderness Song by Everett Ruess

I have been one who loved the wilderness
Swaggered and softly crept among the mountain peaks;
I have listened long to the sea's brave music;
I have sung my songs above the shriek of desert winds.

On canyon trails when warm night winds were blowing, 
Blowing, and sighing gently through the star-tipped pines,
Musing, I walked behind my placid burro,
While water rushed and broke on pointed rocks below.

I have known a green sea's heaving; I have loved 
Red rocks and twisted trees and cloudless turquoise skies,
Slow sunny clouds, and red sand blowing.
I have felt the rain and slept behind the waterfall.

In cool sweet grasses I have lain and heard 
The ghostly murmur of  regretful winds
In aspen glades, where rusting silver leaves 
Whisper wild sorrows to the green-gold solitudes.

I have watched the shadowed clouds pile high;
Singing I rode to meet the splendid, shouting storm
And fought it's fury until the hidden sun 
Foundered in darkness, and the lightning heard my song.

Say that I starved; that I was lost and weary;
That I was burned and blinded by the desert sun;
Footsore, thirsty, sick with strange diseases;
Lonely and wet and cold, but that I kept my dream!

Always I shall be one who loves the wilderness:
Swaggers and softly creeps among the mountain peaks;
I shall listen long to the sea's brave music;
I shall sing my songs above the shriek of desert winds.
Geothermal area in the front basin at Norris in Yellowstone National Park, May 2013
Red-winged blackbird on the plains near Roundup, April 2014
Juicy, red raspberries from the garden patch, June 2014
Sunset on an evening bicycle ride, September 2014
The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone from the south rim, May 2013
I recently finished a fascinating book about the spectacular short life and subsequent disappearance of the young artist, poet, and adventurer Everett Ruess.   It was called Finding Everett Ruess: The Life and Unsolved Disappearance of a Legendary Wilderness Explorer by David Roberts.  It was quite a thrilling tale, particularly as it is a true one.  It was a intriguing blend of mystical nature writing and adventure with an unsolved mystery thrown in for a twist.  I am currently reading a second about him entitled On Desert Trails with Everett Ruess.  I don't know that a life of total solitude in the desert is what I'd like to do with my own life, but I do have to admire the passion by which Everett lived.  He had a dream and a vision and he lived it.  I suppose it is no surprise that have my own leanings towards the joy and revelation found through quiet, humbling communion with nature, so its no wonder, really, that Everett appeals to me.  His words and philosophy seem reminiscent of John Muir or Henry David Thoreau, both of whom I admire.  As a person who frequently sighs and swoons at the delights of sunlight on rocky cliffs or the miniature marvel of insects Everett's letters from the wild canyonlands of the American southwest fill me up with joy, wonder, and wanderlust.  They made me long for the trail.  There is so much beauty in the world to see.  So many cliffs and waterfalls and lakes and forests.  So many rainbows and leks and geysers and canyons.  I know that I will never see it all.  The world is too vast and my time in it too short.  But, I try to be diligent about noticing the beauty all around me each and every day--on our megavactions and on our walks around the neighborhood.  There is so much beauty, so much wonder.
A Lone Star Geyser eruption and two happy campers, August 2014 


  1. Nature is truly AWESOME! Scott and I so love experiencing it as often as wee can. And we have started feeding the birds once more for the winter months and are enjoying watching them through our front windows once more. We are talking about visiting one of the beaches in January when there are no crowds and we can simply enjoy the beauty and power of the seaside.

  2. I already have planned to visit the Storm Point along Lake Yellowstone in Yellowstone National Park at my friend's recommendation but after reading your published blog and viewing these pictures I decide to go there before my west coast tours. I will taste the red raspberries and enjoy the scene of a sunset. Now I can’t wait to see this stunning scenery.


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