For Vivian

Last night I went to see Finding Vivian Maier, a documentary about one of the most prolific and talented street photographers of the 20th century. She shot without publication, amassing hundreds of thousands of negatives that were only discovered and recognized for their brilliance after her death. There seemed to be this sadness, over the…



I do not know this country, this continent. Every bit of red earth is new, as are the smiles and warmth of its people. I came for work, but I will leave having made more friends than money. And I’m OK with that.    

Fall Apart

“What is it like to fall apart?” the waiter asked me as I ordered the soup. Is it that obvious? Can he read it on my face? I raise the menu hoping to live behind it forever. What’s it like to live unhinged? To feel the air seep out of your soul? I cannot say;…


A Lost Pilgrim

I woke up to frost on the windshield this morning. And this: It’s coming. Soon the seasonal whitewash will creep into the valley, and the full wrath of winter will fall. Every year as that process begins my palms sweat: ice season is approaching. It’s time to fly. Ice is different than rock. It’s fluid,…


40 Degree Limit

Photo by Joe Klementovich I can’t stay away: I was back in the Cathedral Cave Friday afternoon. It was 40 degrees and cloudy, but that hardly mattered. The Cave gets morning, not evening sun anyway. But I’m excited to visit my Sanctuary, a longterm project that now feels enticingly possible, so after warming up on the…


The Point

The point is not the summit. The finish line is not the goal. They are arbitrary markers, endpoints that prove not to be endpoints once crossed. They are simply waypoints, in no way emblematic of the richness we seek, and sometimes find. It’s a funny thing, climbing. It always seems like an achievement-oriented pursuit. Why…