You’re like me… Escaping restraint to the mountains. The madness withdraws here, only peace succeeds.
I’d not have noticed were it not for Amy calling from the back of the bus, as though we were the only passengers and it wasn’t as late as it was – how the moon was following us along our way, dancing atop of the Andes in the night with no care for what might think the stars of its escapades, that long calm ride out of blissful nowhere and into the future. Or that I could enjoy the company of softness unabashed leaning in to conversation and my soul immediately like we’d known each other forever and little by little, falling and willing, I’ve never known Christmas mornings quite as wonderful as that descent. Such wanton curiosity and tender openness after a few hours acquaintance, within which time our lives had been searched and laid bare for discovering, and it’d been decided as I stared past her doting and into the night at the leaping moon coming to my conclusions only then and feeling every blink of her eyes; that I was her angel, and she really believed it to be so, in the most honestly reflected way with all of her uninhibited heart. And although falling went opposed to everything strong I’d ever known and put up, I knew then at last; that my purpose after all was simply to love with all that I had.
A man enters a valley such as this, and at last he is quiet. All of his grandeur immediately and rightly disperses into nothingness. A most natural and healthy state is surely quickened to the light.
I could leave Earth and soar the open sky for the rest of my days. Hurl toward the brink untroubled, drifting home on a stream. I could circle the clouds for eternity, calm, free and satisfied. Pause to bathe in the cold suns magnificence, and drink the breeze of heavens sighs.
But I could not love you more.
We were lucky with the weather, as fine days seemed to follow us mostly everywhere we went. Though it was the middle of Summer, the temperatures were as high as 30 to mid 30’s in Santiago, then dropped to around 4 deg Celsius I think, in Ushuaia. The wind could be quite fierce at times and meeting up with rain, it made for very unpleasant trekking conditions. Lots and lots of layers needed sometimes and it was always difficult to predict, changing from one moment to the next. It really is a very special place, and probably one of the better things I have experienced in my life so far.
Can it not be said, that only he can meet calm and relief who is storm-worn and standing and who has not stumbled thus his respiring? Who has allowed his balance to find him by at last keeping still though else nothing is, and having flung to the gusts for the valley below his charge and strain of striving vain. By not gripped by the incertitude of factual things such as winds and aims, they ceased to fatigue him and fell away into vanishment the more he fought them not. He has seen his depths and caring less for heights is happy if he can burn the day sitting on the adret of his Himalaya, to finish a good book and gathering there in himself like the snow and sunlight around him, and passing unhindered through his own being like the tide of ordinance.
Sunday came as Sundays do, with utile retrospectives of the week that was, breaking dawn over the yawning consciousness. These early ended days and seasonal moods seem no longer parallel with my evolved pursuits and may after all prove the last debris of habitual civilities being to a better advantage left as I go to the grove. It is not now enough that I can draw rational ends from what is done, but consider need how they may be useful if only in ways ahead. Just as Auroral warmth will, in the course of time sun the outermost blades of a dew-dampened glebe, it touches the curiosity sooner or later, of who linger long enough after young ire cools, that perhaps many more insights might be hidden in the forest bed that could rend the former outworn. The idea of setting in to meet a future self, more intelligent and virtuous, that you never could imagine much less decide on, becomes with accidental age an increasing prospect of interest. The flow of streams do not cease, and though the refractory trance of shimmering light gives good reason for satisfied reflection, the brooks on which they bend keep right on pouring into an unknown. You will appreciate then a favourable discomfort when can you dwell on renewal, and receive it well, knowing there is some knowledge to be gained from the mountains still, which, from their peaks impart more than will the valleys ever read, and can the mountains themselves even tell.
The areas I would explore, until today I’d stalled in visiting. Knowing well the enjoyment gathered there before, would be increased with new awareness added since, and compounded further by anticipations of forthcoming study. I went once more to the woods and felt instantly recognised and secure. By a warmly gesture of introduction, the entrance appeared fitted with a near ceremonious fanfare proceeding long back to the mark I ventured from, growing in a silent fervency not immediately obvious. Leaves rained down from above, every so often at first, tumbling in fine spun algorithms too sharp and delicate for the pace of human eye, then, in multitudes were flung unabated and cheerfully to enhance the charm of the trail. Meadows bristled with tactile hush, – the very roots playfully inspected by low swerving gusts which without warning suddenly would surge up, bursting clear and jubilant from a gap in the grass, to rejoin the surface current. Much of the forest in concert swayed solemnly, but the diligent observer would have noted dotting the flanking elevations in crucial positions amid the chime, stood sentry Coniferae, ominously firm yet acknowledging in generous respects. As I passed through the thicket there intimated a mysterious parting of things on approach, that closed to my heel, swallowing before it fell, the very dust hurled by my arrival. It was as though an agreement had whispered over the lands, that I had consent to saunter unhindered and accepted, a brother lost to the years, and finally come home from his wilds.
Though all the day long, storm clouds had moaned the difficulty of holding verve, I found it trying nonetheless to suppose a more lenient setting than I’d found in the dandelion meadows where I lay a good hour. With none but the breeze for company and fits of chimeric spray escaped and washing the distant hilltops to delight my attentions, there is sufficient shelter and entertainment here no doubt, should the lid relenting begin to weep, and in doing so arrest the course of any traveller. There remained however, much of the valley to reach and while the thought of staying had qualified it’s charisma, worsening tempers in the sky did thrust a buried preference forward, impelling thus a need to gather at once my last looks and be on my way.
So into the great Maitai I pressed deeper, neither hurrying nor with delay, and with the constant threat of a downpour hanging where I went. I can tell you, that time in the meadow with my ear to the Earth, and feeling the heartbeat of Thunder throbbing all the way through, indeed was the finest hour of the day.
Setting off from the hostel to Nelson town in the early evening, to take my final walk of this December 8th, one event of disagreeable familiarity transpired as I approached the Collingwood bridge. No sooner had I marked a black portentousness in the summits, now buried in shroud of pending tumult, than it barked recognition and volleyed at once towards and upon me loosing an increasingly light-hearted cloudburst that suffered no malice to it, and within mere seconds tapered into a drizzle. How six years ago coming to that same bridge I met with a similar inexplicable wave that did rush to welcome me my first hour. Although I had not since been still, having lapped the Earth over many times, and numerous personal revolutions undergone to the fact I am almost somebody different entirely, it was here finally the fretting sky had caught up with me.
”Ye province of revolutions lure; preserving heights where ecstasy brews,
Of relic agreements furious homecoming, riding hymns of deep-set change,
Savage and sweeping the entire.
Instincts bowed to primal charms palpable loom.”
As though with impatience pregnant at the oppression, the sun rushed from a corner early and determined, finding differently few or none with which to compete for a place overhead. The sky was again its own and so ascended, shone bold and brilliant, furnishing the hill-face with aspects of a double occupancy, that every rock, brush, and marking, by light grand and unguarded were now endowed with a companion in its own shade. And how they approach unsought, as a-walking do thoughts, the finer corollaries of pardoned observation. Tuning to this auspicious transmission, a clever reckoning happened into the meadows of free thought, placidly and perfect like a far-come Monarch butterfly pervading beyond the babel of hominine format, draping a hush over static and putting peace in the province.
Came thus; that, by not repressing a single Atom of our individual strangeness for any one in this World, can we raise, not the least our essential befitting selves but too, our worth the while fellows in this marvel-brimmed World to a more robust and appropriate elevation, to melodic sameness. Each but by earnestly being, is to all as giving sunshine.
With these heartening concepts behind me, my brow wearing rays warm and radiant that gladdened all the trails ahead, I expected to delight in many a walk across the region, or willing, one alone and stretching out unto the bend of sunset, — such I would choose, unhurried and pointed nowhere in particular save whims soft instruct:
Calm ye going, traveler. Who hurry need, unoften arrive in full.
A generous and attractive span here breathes, and away from tiresome obligations at home, the hours abundant and drawn, I saw no logical reason to rush upon my haven in the stacks, but instead, like better to savour the notion. To be exempt of qualifying or preparedness, and for the meantime, to harken the rolling milieu.
Fair environs blur,
Puzzled Nature steps aside.
Her decorous items never were,
In the strivers narrowed eye.
The modern tramp I’ve noted, high and low enjoys an unduly comfortable passage, taking whence one hastens as much in luggage and familiar ideas as can carried be, lest should any measure of itinerary come upon suspense. How far does one really go, that brings as much in homely poise? — How deep, with expectations?
One fellow, like many others with whom I’d exchanged interests addressing personal history and methods of migration, had before his present embark, adapted for every detail and apparently necessary habit would gentle his way. He has since stumbled amiss and folded up his bliss by threat of likely disruptions, among them poor weather and slow transportations! Each calamity is the first and personal; instead of disclosing, confusing alternate and equal routes. Of certitude, they say it fools itself certainly, and proportionately. It is as though none are aware of how operates the world, and find only what can be procured from it before considering all that is given freely and abundant.
Perhaps then, it is revelations tension expressed on their faces, and I notice inasmuch I’ve been possessed before. Arriving at the current bursting Utopia to find after all, not displeasure’s ease, nor passions paid as ’twere imagined but instead, the very same disparaged self as departed first. And discovering too late, how little of anything a relocation actually better makes, can exhaust finally the enduring truant into a sullen pause; whose great peace and stability has been always tied to commotive mobility, which when seized, puts solidarity to dismantlement, upon stood an identity now thoroughly reaped.
I have witnessed, slump ye suffered, stunned into an unexcitable stare for days, sometimes many weeks when, were it not for a wounded intellect would you have the vigour to rejoice on the sun-loved promenade you have missed for so long.
Ah, it swells an effect ample and dear, the plainest sense, the simplest brand of travel to me. Quiets and readies unlike any, and retains the while whom cooperates knows, a present levity withal.
I’ve seen too some things; wondrously unexplainable things;
I have nameless shores breached,
Span of a thousand chasms leaped
Of skies edge within fractions reached,
and sun, so much golden overcome heaped.
These subtleties, actualities of magic are, and it cannot past pitch of belief be, that it were an investment somewhere I am maintained so as to see; as they are and not as I would them be. I am glad, a whole and reticent gladness that I scaled yonder hem where once, it seemed for the fog there was nothing left to discover after. And I wish, with all of me that bears any particle of capacity for wishing; would rise, whomever it is within thy ownership the skill of crafting miracles, — whom holds the tools for spinning wild invocations into chemical matter and form, that embellish the sphere on which we make our wander-some way;
Wield thy artistry, is my request.
Let them see.
Eke out thy lights last, ye guiding beacon to oceans lost; reviver of memories done, deliver most necessarily now. We take up the pace and order in our heads, and are many scrambling, yet from hereafter high vistas I have seen, there is room at the end, — as well soundest recess. Though each their own speed and line adopt we all arrive eventually the same beach that greets all the tides and seas of our lifetime.
Yield the map, and fix no plan to the ripening. Oft where no path goes, the way bestows, and by ways rough bolstered are the better attributes of human nature. Beware some safety, that it blocks the impressions and perils that advise we are weakest where we hold to our strengths. Be trained in transition; for spontaneity prepare, and with these qualities the human experience cannot but pour reward. Go then into the world. Go where a different Sun rains on a scenery you never could conceive. Where smiles in vain are brighter than yours, because there indeed are places where people with far less than you or I, would not for anything that can we offer trade places. Invite the ruin of verity. Be cleft, and decimated utterly, and when you can be tipped out no further, turn around and start over. Another pass will unfurl a new world still. How appealing then, would seem the coastline of your Ithaca. After its dazzling Shoal-breaks negotiating, delighting in the first touch of sand at your feet, — how it blends the mud we bring.
Do you see wanderer? Everything comes round. We travel wide in circles, going ever nowhere but home again.
However I entreat the conversation and positively take part, frequently I go away from it with less enthusiasm to ration for intercourse along the trail than before. I don’t much understand the prevalent manner of excursion, nor can I relate with whom espouse the mode, seems stale and cowardly wanton to me. While Nature fair is renewal and simplicity, and man is kin to Nature, so am I these things, or trying, therefore providing well for my family, as provides for me.
So long as you do not interfere will they come, the rightful thoughts you should be having. That might have gone ahead in dreamy reconnaissance, and from them urged must create than rather be escaped, the new and uncomfortable world as celestial currents foretells. To my surprise just as my study to people were drawn away from the hills, so did I direct my first walk today to the town and its inhabitants I first hoped to avoid, where I found immediately, archetypes of the kindly traveller-being I should like to become, thriving, where I was expecting if any, few. As cheerfully destitute and mingling by compare as to show mine a quest lavish and conceited, and that I had not barely begun to frivol away the details that hold a man back from an honestly civilised life.
What is a traveler without some discrimination to be washed of after all?
Afternoon – Few are the days remaining the sun and I will each other salute from our points. Every breath dares curfew, blowing past the lips like do children from the porch laughing into the prairie twilight. Regrettably, we young begin collecting reasonableness and going indoors at the setting of sun, resigned early and fearful of the fates. I am persuaded that, the moment in my boyhood when I walked away from my friends in the garden and quit being surprised by treasures unearthed in Summer dirt, did I permit the gradual deterioration of a certain and necessary joy, and paid severely for the privilege of true impoverishment. In adolescence, my hopes were societal, far out of proportion to either’s reparation, and at 31 they are the hills to which I retreat and commune with solitude, gathering health where no society dwells, and redeeming innocence in wildness.
O I must where I will and my intuition tells me, make haste thither. There can be little of consequence where I stake my peace now, but verily awaits a grave result whom does not heed his deeper call, rippling small erasure the world over beginning with his own.
All the principle materials that interlace the fabric of exquisite days are accomplished presently, and eternally. The treetops, elated and fussing observed first, a marvellous stirring descended. In all things a dilating intrigue penetrated. My rivers hummed with its felicity, the chorus of ancient tides returning. Pines and Cedars bend in wise homage, much as avidly the green-apple shoots and blades at their base rave and flutter, like excited streamers in a hurricane. A rolling rumour of a wild arousal moves across the land, as touches blessing; a sunk religious recognition swelling underfoot. The deeper this sweet Nirvana allows mine infringe, growing in confidence and open a wellbeing everlasting springs. Tremendous spiritual values were evidently at gamble.
Abashed of the richness, I wanted briefly a harbour from it and so, into a pocket stole, — foliated thick with bristling flags of jade, a portal beheld, to a strange dimension of dusty venation winding skyward to the measured centre of New Zealand. Probing the design of this protected underbelly, where, though few lances of sun beam insert that reach the floor, — subsists a subtle and flourished unity, though separate seeming from the outer state, as unsparing its own sense of glee for living, or relevance to the Whole. When most you think yourself absorbed to amends for the testimony, having accrued ample curious blisses; peels back the roof, shade recedes at once and explodes the sky with sunshine and effulgence suffuse as astounds the blinking eye.
And how gloriously uncomplicated is living!
I saw the day stretch far into a living light, and I fell, optimistic into a long ease, setting my cares upon a cloud, and reclining in the grass to watch them drift serene along the choir of pacific zephyrs. The air is mild as any I have breathed. A blazing gold ignites the miles many distant of crowding highlands refreshingly green as will fantasy conjure, and furrows looping that vanish under valleys bear a remarkably magnetic configuration of sound and colour diverse and piercing as keeps the plenty pilgrim curved in contemplations who enter.
My faith, I place in the well-aimed potency of humankind, therefore Nature. A universal advantage realised, when the individual acquires an understanding of their own logical intuitions, untroubled of desire and opinion, and makes it an enduring function, to carry out that responsibility of adherence, for the crescent of one’s life. I soar within evidenced constraints, in which have I a salvation, and enough for life on Earth. In spite of this, I saw a bother of sorts today, the explanation thereof, situate in domains exceeding my interpretative reach. From a straw pile I removed an ashen cast stone glaringly contrast, approximately palm sized. Heaving it mightily into an ambit under spell of brash impulse, I marked its imperial ascension unto the orbits whither angels tread, to abruptly melt from sight and be escaped of this world, into another. I could fix no location to its descent against the azure, or detect the slightest decibel of audible evidence of impact. It was certain irregularity, and I stood a moment mystified hosting and dismissing a number of humorous justifications within the timeframe of a blink. I was too immersed still in a gentle sedation by exhaustive contentment and volumes of mending mountain air, to traverse the labyrinth of clarity’s grail. There is to be found as well, recall, a wealth of lucidity, in not needing to know some things.
The most preferred of my inspirited erroneous conclusions, opposed to putting my mood to solemnity, retained me awhile in a storm-less verve; imagining it was my much missed friend, hid in the perennial shade of his mortal due, had a divine hand in the stones eclipse, reaching out remote of his bounds for that prohibited prize, as he was wont to do and surely would, if were he still. Defiant and impressive as a day break star, and equitably short-lived as only one falls.
When at myself a loss, and ventured after the fringe of an interval into the quiet grove of idle reverie, I sometimes visit with thee, in the dale of memories past. My approach at times hesitated, examining his mood in secret by cloak of Evergreen, suspecting out of his eye a moments hint of distress. Relief, lo! I am confessed, and it flees, where sadness goes when friends convene; or I was not so well concealed as I thought, I never know. For he greets me always convivial, my friend, loathed that I should ever leave uncheered.
There are conditions and occurrences that won’t wishing repair, or mountains mend. At times neither will the hills return, or skies give back, and faithless is he who interprets anything but perfection, from the chaos of natural ordinance.
Inventing and misperceiving coincidence… perchance merely I was looking the other way; missed frequent, looking for something sensational.
The insight we need, is but wrest from time and labour exchanged, and rarely at an age or mood of our choosing. It is ever biding the seasons circuit in the high ridges your toiled return. Wherein thy callow exuberance from the swale saw mockery in the shadow of great spires, climb thee now, unsupported and intent on prudent resource, and a part in the sun. When you will appear at last, bearing face to the heavens, a firm step and tried constitution, and the dependable properties as one fit to be called a good man resolved to service, will it then acquaint thee; an outlook revering, and to be revered.
I took my departure from the woods, along the way luxuriating in the little enchantments of Maitai’s animated riverbanks towards the street of Nile, which name I liked very much. Fine wisps of cloud fanned precisely from a pivot after this realm, and smeared into arcs with the roll of Earth. With happy sighs did cordial winds still comb, and dressed the spritely daydream, a coronal glow. Timber tops remarked the electricity in softened theatrics, teasing out light in shards, and I became conscious here hangs year-round, a vivid chemistry of Spring-like energy. No cricket or bird withheld its song, and if it did it was absent from this place, where Daffodils and dust rain horizontally and gleaming in the sun, collect on the roadside like frost and cotton. Thinking to the these parachuting wishes wasted, I passing observed a black stone, obvious as charcoal in the snow, that concerted in appearances of that I had earlier lost. But for eyelids fallen heavy with sleep-lust, had I sense to entertain imagination further, I might have believed about it some fanciful things.
Abaft a brooding climb, finally we mount the firmament, which suspends our dot with an affable keep and steadies our careen down the Tasman, settling ahead the finest conditions for flight have I ever encountered. The ocean and upper-wide parapet are an indivisible frontier of immaculate cobalt, that, were it not for one vivid and far-flung ivory thread, all ships and birds would negotiate the same strange territory (1).
By what I estimate to be journeys middle, and gladly redeemed of concern for accuracy in my projection of this days age, – the Sky and Earths bound is clear and imminent now. A rolling tumult of ashen brumal vapours pour in below, and delineates our vessels place in this wide realm between the vast under and above, and through effortlessly we soar.
Confirmed for 12:33pm – how I hadn’t asked.
Descending beneath the shroud in approach of our station, manifest appears the ample sea again, nearer than before that every ripple and indentation by Nature’s heavenly waft inscribed, – her living moving signature, from this vantage an exquisite precision of pixelation no man of this globe in all his possible ingenuity has mastered. The rough nooks and tiny tidemarks, the mere thousand-fold details in this bedlam are exactly shaped and even-spaced, such as imply a smoothness overall. Pulling this pattern from the particulars, becomes everything clear and thorough. The Suns showering grace is by mist-cover waned of its full majestic and small breakthroughs herald the clamour, like faded fog lights searching lone and in vain and though unable to break the sea bed, on what surface the couriers of light crash, spill carriage of gorgeous jewels (2). How a clear sky would bedazzle the eyes with visions of fantastic wealth. But this is not the domain of Earths golden orb, this is Aotearoa – ‘land of the long white cloud.’
I am four pages abused and not grounded yet. My thoughts are soaring, whirling heretic fireflies, and flailing I mean to jar every one of them, pale and ablaze just the same. Jotting down all apprehensions as they occur, however incomplete and nonsensical, faster than can reasons dust settle, clean of inauthenticity grown from some tainted soil in me fed by cheap incentives raining. Simplicity and immediacy is key, and tends portray the wisest outcome. For death is at hand, drawing every instant closer my heels, and long while I am writing is breath, no matter the kind or power. Some rather are astonished gasps, others a cough or wheezing any one aspect of the respiratory collective can induce by a moments perfunctory slip. O give me clean air, that I may expel my fumes and make parity with being.
The sun would have fallen on my musing, stepping down after the oceans brook from its lofty seat, had I not steered my look out again. Shoals and inlets increase, then I am unsure of the proper terms for these quiet natural developments, when I can name and navigate man-constructed bayous and disorderly boulevards without relation or concern. Methinks, for too long I have made my home in the city, and try soon enough to rectify this once and forever.
The border lands over where we enter are not the same as those from which we departed, nor as before that I remember them. Auckland’s edges are a rounded and boldly primordial to strength and apparently among the last by men breached, where the frayed and rampant outline of Sydney’s shredded shores resemble by comparison, an ever-polished town wincing free and kicked adrift of its despised histories evidence. It is little wonder to me, having exchanged considerable time in both whether similar aspects can be observed in a place as those of its inhabitants, or not.
Evening – close enough to schedule am shown to the hostel every bit the same as recollections depicted, I am not reported several minutes but to leave my belongings and wring what daylight remains, strolling this memorable hillside hamlet, for six years to my longing attached. I held to the outskirts, clear of the city centre which, however charming held no interest or value to me, preferring to have instead the smoke and pine layered slopes in the far prominence inside seeings ambit. I am struck with how startled I am by luxury of sky. Notwithstanding its permanence, Nelson’s corner thereof can occupy the greater share in ones field of vision unimpeded, and such grandeur displayed is always great source of immaterial tonicity to me. How little of all the first time I appreciated, that extends now a most genial invitation, to relish in qualities attractive to wise enjoyments pursuit. Gladdened withal, for where I have been, that so much the more is before me now.
When at last, a generations amount of study in one day exhausts the eyelids duties, I retire to the household that will be for five nights hereafter my home. – And it seems, that like the last time I was on the road, between some other drab and increasingly short interval of regular living, I am most awakened and secure now, falling once more into that place from which I shall never want to leave.