Ancient Waves Live On

These drainage waves were formed 10,000 years ago when a lake as large as a sea filling the valley below my house drained in half a day. They are still catching sun and water, in the forms of heat and cold..p1480024

In other words, the lake is still alive. It only seems so long ago because of our individual life times and generational change… but it’s still that moment long ago. Wondrous!

Spirit Mountains and Ice Rivers of the Similkameen

The Similkameen River makes a big bend to the east at the foot of Chopaka and Hurley Peak (the left and right peaks below)

A few ridges and fifty miles to the south, the spectacularly mis-named Starvation Mountain is their twin.

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After 12,000 years, this is still the spirit zone of the ice. We are the creatures who dwell in this energy zone. We call it the sky. Below is an image of their brother, K-Mountain, twenty miles upriver from Chopaka, in a spring dawn.

Isn’t that Sen’klip, Coyote, dressed all in white, playing his tricks on the mountain’s face? To live in the Similkameen is to live in a poem, with a refrain.

 

The Bones of Our Mother

This is our mother.

P2250043 These are the bones of our mother, with the glacial outwash gravel that cut them from her body above.P2250357

These are some of our mother’s bones weathering in the sun and the cold.

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Beautiful bones, eh.  They are just stone shadows of her heart, too. Her heart is the real show.

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Notice how Rabbitbrush is at her side. Faithful companion! Here she is in the Autumn.

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Here’s Owl, within our mother’s thoughts.

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Note: I don’t expect you to see the story in this cliff. I’d just like to point out that the bones and the story are there but they have nothing to do with a European, a literal, a scientific, or a natural history understanding of the land. I’m kind of hoping, though, that the surprise of seeing the picture here, and the challenge of seeing an owl in what Enlightenment tradition has taught us is only rock, might give you a tiny glimpse of our mother, just for a flash. And then? Then it’s your story.

 

Fencing the Okanagan Valley

Way up here …P2160268
200 metres above the lake in the valley below …

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… high up in the sky …

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… there was once a river, that left pebbles half a metre in diameter, like this.

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Some people live in this riverbed still.

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Others live far below, in the deepest part of the air…
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.. and build fences.

I Love Water

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Big Bar Lake, with Damselfly

The green colour comes from the bright lake bottom, which is the remains of the bed of an underground glacial river, made of tiny, flat, oval pebbles ground off the uplifted seabeds of the mountains just above the lake. The river flowed 10,000 years ago as the continental ice sheet was melting, then flowed around a 5-kilometre-long block of ice, no doubt encasing it in blue-grey gravel, which kept the sun from it. Eventually, the ice melted, the gravel became the lakebed, and the ice became this water, which is replenished with every winter’s snows, with its waving underwater leaves and that damselfly, moving between the dimensions. 

Who would pump this stuff into the rock to extract oil, and remove it from life forever? Only an agent of death.

Lichen and Bunchgrass in Harmony

It starts with a drop, of water you might say, but I think it’s a drop of life. Look how both bunchgrass and lichen on this glacial erratic repeat the patterns of the stars. (For the best view, click the image to enlarge it.)

P1170427Vaseaux Lake Nature Conservancy

A culture that sees nature as living in a few scraps of land in between industrial, agricultural and residential developments is a culture that does not live among the stars.

Flying Fish in the Grasslands

Winter cloud blows east off of the Pacific Ocean. When it strikes the Northwestern North American Coast it crests around the three thousand metre high peaks of the Coast Mountains …

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… and across the Central Plateau. Don’t be fooled. No one is drowning in this sea of water. Here’s what it looks like in a trench, carved by a glacier fed by those clouds long ago …

ravenRaven Flying on His Fingertips Under the Restless Waves of the Sea

Photo: Anassa Rhenisch