Here I am.

~

looking back at the ranch

~

You ask me… How was Argentina?

I answer… Intense.

One word. That’s all you want to hear.  You don’t want to hear my stories. At least, I never think you do.

My stories are not comfortable. I’m out there.  I try to touch down from time to time, but landing isn’t always easy.  It’s neither pretty nor graceful.  More often than not, I crash.  But then I’m grounded.  Flat out.  I’m here.  I’m home.

Anyway, I’m quiet.  Not much of a story teller.  I’m a writer.  Maybe you’ll read my words; maybe you won’t.  I will still write.

~

rio grande winter

~

“TELL ME WHAT YOU PLAN TO DO WITH YOUR ONE WILD AND PRECIOUS LIFE”  Mary Oliver

~

my horses

~

Intense.  Yes.

I don’t know what else to say.  I think it takes distancing – reflection from a safe place – introspection – to fully grasp what you just went through. Get back in your comfort zone and see how far out of it you really were.

Good, you say.  Glad you’re home. Seems the thing to say.

Enough of that. Let’s move on. You pull out your phone and show me a picture of another dead elk.  Looks like the one you killed last year, but you tell me this one is different.  You tell me the story.  I try to listen.  I try to care.   I think about the dead elk. I think about how proud you are of one more death.  I’m just back from delivering life.

Maybe these aren’t my people.

But this is my land.  My frozen river.  My white mountain.  And my roots have tangled me tightly to life.  Life here, there, where the wind blows wild.

I am not today what I was yesterday.  I don’t want to be.

Don’t we all evolve? Some days it feels as the mountain erodes: slow and steady with every drop of rain, cutting, shaping, smoothing.

I am sculpted with every falling tear.

Wet and warm and crystalline.  The clear blood of  woman’s passionate life and the silent river from which stories are born.

~

rikki

~

Back.

And somehow it feels a little backwards.  Maybe upside down.

Back to a community where I do not belong. I’ve learned to accept I’ll never be accepted. I can accept that.

Some days it feels lonely, but I’m not really alone.  I have my own people, my own place. My tribe. Some closer. Some farther.  My heart and soul spread wide.  At least, I take comfort in trying to believe that.

And yet the trees embrace me.  Cold silent silhouettes, standing like bones but still oozing energy of the untamed, pure and raw and unrefined.

In and among their ancient souls and wild ways and fallen needles, I find my place.  I remember why I am here.  I am home.

~

pole mountain

~

Stay tuned, subscribe or check back in soon.  I will tell you about where I was.

~

15 thoughts on “Here I am.

  1. Here you are!! I have been waiting…hoping to read that you have returned. In what ever state that may be, I am listening and here. Welcome back, you were missed.

  2. Welcome home, Gin. Would love to hear more about Argentina when you are ready to share. The photo of Little Ricky (who isn’t so little anymore!) sure made me smile!

  3. Always enjoy your writings and your thoughts. I only wish I had the talent you do to express yourself in the written word. Hopefully I will get out there this summer for a short stay and get up to the ranch to see all of you. Unlike the comment just before this, I have never been big on seeing outside the US. Always thought a person could spend a lifetime seeing this country if we only get out and do it. If health permits sometime in the future, I plan to continue to see more of it.

  4. You are a refreshing link to a world outside the confines of a classroom of five year olds. You take me away to another place, and another person’s reality. You have been missed.

  5. Oh so glad you are back Gin, and to read your wonderful words that are felt, and your beautiful photos which I love. And, YES YOU ARE a storyteller. You tell us your story every time you post here.
    Yippee! and Welcome home.

  6. Please take time to re-acclimate, maybe even relax, tho I’m not sure you know how! And then, yes, we want to hear from you! You are such a model of growth and vision for all of us. Love you!

  7. Oh, I look at those mountains declaring continuity. I run my hands over the gentle curves of furry horses. I laugh with the Goose’s delight. And marvel over that house. Talk about manifesting! In spite of massive labour, did building it feel as effortless as you guys made it seem?

    Another layer about to be lifted and felt. You know you’ll just find more beauty – it’s the essence of your strength, Gin.

  8. A double dip: Mary Oliver’s partner of many years, Molly Cook, was a skookum photographer/gallery operator. Reportedly she took her time deciding whether or not she accepted any person she’d met. Molly died a while ago and in the eulogy, the speaker said it took great courage to get to know Molly. Go Molly! Some of us REALLY understand!

  9. We’ll be working on the stock trailhead just East of Thirty Mile again this Spring, clean it up, fill in some of the chuck holes in the road, put some small rocks in the low water crossing on the Rio Grande so the horses don’t have to pick their way through those big rocks in the river bottom, risk hurting themselves. After that we’ll hopefully have time to ride up Weminuche Creek, cut out some of the downed trees on the trail, camp a day or two up by the Pass. If you guys drive by, hope you can stop.

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