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The new color of fall in the West


Fire-killed standing forest on the flanks of Mt. Adams, Washington.

Another record year of heat. Another record year of wildfire.

The new colors of fall in the West: black, silver, and white.

Reds, yellows, and oranges are now the province of summer – in the form of fire.

I took this photo: Day 30

spiral of life


He spun the hoop in his right hand, the knuckles on his left were taped. The hoop was a solid metal pipe; it clattered heavily the one time it fell to the tile. He stepped in and out of it with no more difficulty than stepping off the curb. Stepping in and beginning a spin with the same motion, he adjusted his footing and his grasp as he turned. Sometimes moving both feet together and shifting his weight to create momentum, then redistributing his limbs and rolling on. No matter if he fell out when his feet were above his head, he flowed back into the hoop and spun off again.

I took this photo years ago in Paris. I have always loved it though I cannot explain why. The beauty and skill of the young man drew me in at first. The point at which the hoop and the shadow meet has strength and the joining creates the symbol for infinity. The shadow seems to be floating above the plaza tiles, not on the same plane as the hoop nor the tiles. And the shadow is not exactly a mirror image but has its own dynamic. The background umbrellas and the vendor’s roof repeat the circular theme.

Somehow all of these pieces fit together for me. They create a past, a present, and a future all in the same circle, all in the stopped motion of the hoop and the man in it.

In many native traditions the circle, and especially the spiral, are sacred shapes. They represent birth and rebirth. They are an invitation to dance. Similarly, symmetry and asymmetry are opposite sides of the same coin – as joy and sorrow, life and death.

This seems a lot of weight for a Parisian man in a hoop to bear. Finally, I realize it is not a burden. There is no weight, there are no edges, no corners, no divisions. There is simply a man in a hoop. And he is limitless.

Tape up your knuckles, step into the hoop, and become one with the motion. We are all limitless and it is time to dance.

I took this photo: Fall day

fall color

Fall day

Fall days are meant for lying in the sun, daydreaming under the blue sky and golden, glowing leaves. Brilliant bits of color highlight the seasonal changes. Solid summer greens hold on.

I took this photo lying in the pine needles under an oak tree. I was mesmerized and my agenda was forgotten.

I took this photo: Happy pills

happy pills

What the world needs now.

Peace doesn’t seem to be working. I guess this would be my next vote.

I took this photo, it’s what the world needs now.

I took this photo: Bison roundup


The bison roundup

Each fall in the Mission Valley of Montana there is a bison roundup. The animals are brought off the range for inoculations, branding, and chipping. It’s an intense time of riders, wild bison, curious spectators, modern technology, and ancient memories.

One of the first wildlife refuges in the country, the National Bison Range was founded as a place to prevent the extinction of an animal that once numbered in the tens of millions and ranged across the entire US and Canada. The near eradication of this species in the late 1800s is a tangle of politics, racism, westward expansion, genocide, Manifest Destiny, and greed.

The bison that remain in the contiguous US today are remnants of a landscape, an animal, and the people that once relied upon them for life. Yet they are no more than cattle. They may be wild but they do not roam the prairies, for the prairies no longer exist. They may be sacred but they are no longer an icon, for the great nations they sustained are no more.

I took this photo in the heat of the roundup on a cold October day. Seeing it now, I empathize with the bison being herded into a future they cannot see and do not recognize. Forced from the endless days of grass and open sky to the fences and pens of the modern world. We are no more than cattle.

I took this photo: Sunday Special


Party mixer: beer and ammo, both on sale. 

There are some states where it is still illegal to sell alcohol on Sundays. In other states, you can’t sell ammunition in grocery stores. And then, there is South Dakota.

I took this photo in recognition of our inalienable rights. Beer and ammo. What more do you need on a Sunday afternoon?

I took this photo: I just need a little space


The Imnaha River Valley, Oregon

It’s not you. It’s me. Honest.

There are places in the world that are still spaces. Sparsely populated, difficult to get to, sometimes dangerous, always rewarding.

I took this photo of a space that I hope never becomes a place.

I took this photo: Target audience

Maybe I am doing something very wrong here at The Road not Taken Enough. Or very right. Either way, I think they missed their target audience.

And let’s talk about redundancy.

I took this photo as a screenshot of my email today… Maybe I should register them for my website?

I’m totally gonna do that.

That would create nostalgic awesomeness, for sure.

p.s., they are not writing the stories behind my photos

p.p.s., and gods help whoever gets the personal legacy of the real me.

I mean, seriously.