Welcome to my Wilderness Journal

You may enjoy my September 2012 blog: Sharing Experiences of Great Mystery, which describes the purpose of this wilderness log, photo-art gallery, and poetry corner. In Peace, Bob

Thursday, September 27, 2012

My First Blog

I'm entering new territory here with this simple Blog. Who knows where it will lead. My intent is to share rather than hoard the portion of talents and the truly rich blessings that I've been given. My life has been and continues to be blessed with wonderful and creative people and I've had jobs and lived in freedom and abundance in truly magnificent places.

I've spent many years honing my creative skills and works to get them ready for sharing and at 63 it dawns on me it's time to give what I have and speak what I know just as they are--imperfect works in progress (just like me). So with a mixture of humility and gratitude and with the hope that doing so will touch at least one person, I'm setting out to share my thoughts, photos, poems and experiences now (rather than waiting for the coffee table book of my work to get miraculously published).

The Portal © Bob Hare 2012

So here's an image I created in 2007. Only a few friends have seen this photomontage of mine of a stained glass rosette window above a door in France's Reims Cathedral merged with the Goliath erratic boulder in what I call Boulder Boulevard in Yosemite. This work is clearly inspired by Ansel Adam's creative student Jerry Uelsmann but I'm not going to let that keep me from sharing it with you. After all, every artist is inspired by those who came before and I honor Mr. Uelsmann by showing how his work moves me to experiment on my own.

Here's a poem I wrote last August by the dome light of my 1994 Dodge Grand Caravan after climbing down from my favorite spot in the world, a juniper-speckled glacial ridge in Yosemite's High Country.

Tending Bonsai Ridge  © Bob Hare 2012

I lie down by the wind- blown juniper
With a still mind
And a heart opened by beauty

Shadows climb the peaks above the darkened lake
Raven flies over giant boulders dropped by the last glacier
As alarm chirps of ground squirrel rise up in the thin air

I am tending my garden
Of twisted junipers and espaliered pinemat manzanita
Rooted deeply in polished granite slopes and slabs

Except for the lone beer bottle I picked up
I make no improvements
My tending is simply being Here

Like Adam in his Eden
I talk to the trees and give them names
I touch their cinnamon bark and verdant foliage

Each tree tells me its story
Of nighttime ice storms and enduring drought
Of pelting hail and thundering lightning strikes

As the falling sun leaves each treetop
I move down to the next lit one
And watch its light fade until they all blink out

I carefully walk down the granite ramp
As Earth’s shadow rises to meet the fading pink
Of alpenglow on Cathedral and Tenaya Peaks

In the deep stillness of twilight under awakening stars
I study glacial polish and chatter marks in my granite path
Each step and hop a meditation on beauty and time

Back on Boulder Boulevard I follow the aplite dike that branches
Like the afternoon lightning that sent me scurrying down from the Garden
Until the rainbow arcing over Cathedral Peak sent me running back up again

Double Rainbow over Cathedral Peak © Bob Hare 2012

Here's a photograph from Bonsai Ridge of Cathedral Peak emerging from a rainbow-strewn raincloud as the sun was setting. Like Galen Rowell chasing that rainbow in Lhasa Tibet to get it to end at the Dalai Lama's Potala Palace, I ran breathlessly up Bonsai Ridge to get the junipers and lake under my rainbow.

Here's a brush and ink drawing I did as a wedding gift for my brother-in-law Andy and his wife Laura. I included Andy's wonderful Bernese Mountain Dog Cassidy who has since left us missing her and remembering how she could clear a coffee table with one brush of her tail.

My Heart is lifted as the Clouds on High © 2005 Bob Hare

As you can see my creative energies revolve around the glories of Yosemite which has been my spiritual home since I first laid eyes on Half Dome from Glacier Point in November of 1968 as a 19-year-old army private just graduated from the Defense Language Institute in Monterey. On that memorable day the first snow of the season was falling in muffled clumps from the red fir boughs as the sun broke out and a double rainbow grew up out of the Valley to tower over the shining panorama of peaks lining the eastern horizon. For a young lad from the Gulf Coast of Mississippi this was a true epiphany and I keep coming back for more such glories.

So this ends my first Blog. But it is a good start. I end with a Buddhist Blessing: 

"May all Beings everywhere be well, happy, and free!"

Note: Unless attributed to other sources all text, poems, photographs and artwork in this blog and other blogs entitled "Wilderness Adventures with Bob Hare" are copyrighted © 2012 by Bob Hare. The phrase "Wilderness Adventures with Bob Hare" is a trademark of Bob Hare.