Publishing Announcement: "The Mighty Colorado River: From Glaciers to Gulf"
I was checking the mail today...let's see...bill, Bill, mortgage, more bills, the latest National Park System book about "The Mighty Colorado River - From the Glaciers to the Gulf ", and my fat check from the publisher for my photo contributions...NICE!!!! Things like this a always a great surprise, because I knew about and then enough time went by that I had forgotten about it.
"All rivers, even the most dazzling, those that catch the sun in their course, all rivers go down to the ocean and drown. And life awaits man as the sea awaits the river." ~ Simone Schwarz-Bart
Despite the geologic mysteries surrounding its creation and existence, archaeological findings show that the alluvial fan delta below these ruins clearly provided a habitat for historic inhabitants. In 1960, archaeologist Douglas W. Schwartz investigated the area, including the granaries nestled in the cliffs above the river. He found corncobs, a pumpkin shell, and pumpkin seeds inside the granaries. The people who inhabited the delta harvested these and other crops between 1050 and 1150 A.D. Schwartz gathered other evidence of habitation in the area including other ruins, a petroglyph site and thirty-four pueblo house structures, leading him to conclude as many as 900 people may have lived in the area at that time!
This is my favorite licensing contribution of several to the National Park Service over the years, for a Large format type coffee table book, titled “The Mighty Colorado River: From Glacier To Gulf”. While spending my last light of day here provided magic on many levels, as I pondered the life of those who lived here so long ago and fashioned a humble existence working with the land and its many varied features. I wonder if they felt permanence or impermanence here? My mind tells me they felt permanence, and my heart tells me they felt their place and impermanence in the scheme of life. My soul tells me that that neither mattered to them, instead truly living for the day and the possibility of the next day. While the remains of the civilization persist with the radiation of their personalities, they, like all of us, are drops in time awaiting life like the sea awaits the river.
"The glories and the beauties of form, color, and sound unite in the grand canyon - forms unrivaled even by the mountains, colors that vie with sunsets, and sounds that span the diapason from tempest to tinkling raindrop, from cataract to bubbling fountain.
" ~ John Wesley Powell
In the distance behind me and over the rocky beach out of view, I heard the faint breakfast call from my river guides. I sighed to myself that this would be another morning of rushed breakfast, for I saw the light changing on this scene and knew it would not wait for me to satiate my physical hunger; yet the scene most certainly would satiate my artistic hunger. So I lingered here and extra 15 minutes watching the rising sun cast its glow on the canyon and reflect its goodwill in the river at my feet. The combination of forms, colors, and sound was pure glory and the perfect way to feed my soul for the day's adventures.
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