This month we enjoy a pictorial visit to the beautiful state of Colorado.

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Wild flowers growing among the rocks of the Colorado National Monument

Opening Comments from Bob

This Page: We pictorially travel to Colorado. There are two very serious poems this month, Personal Marathon and Are We Listening?. The vignette is a unique one, A Deeper Understanding of Freedom.

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A must visit if you are in the Grand Junction area is the Colorado National Monument. Many drive by and
never realize it exists.

Two Poems this Month

Personal Marathon

The man sits in the wheelchair,
      the legs no longer working–
      now dependent on his aging wife.
She smiles graciously
      appearing to accept her fate.

What journey has he traveled
      to end seated and dependent?
As a young man robust and fit,
      he never envisioned this fate.

Alas, time catches us all,
      sometimes gently,
      other times cruelly.

No matter how fast we run,
      it is never fast enough.
Only at the finish line
      do we all win.

Comment: I was seated at the Southwest Airlines boarding gate and watched as a man and wife arrived for the early boarding process. From my brief observations and watching them interact, I wrote the above poem.


Are We Listening?

A spec among billions
      this little planet we call Earth–
      27,000 light-years from the Galactic Center.
This terra firma,
      for now, all we have.

Such diversities
      exist on our small atoll.
Skin colors of varied shades
      claim the land.
Cultures still to be numbered,
      and fauna and flora
      yet to be discovered.

Despite signals,
      many only worry about the insignificant,
      drowning in their minutia.
Billions are spent on diets
      while whole populations starve.
Greed remains the golden calf
      worshipped at the expense
      of the multitudes.

Our home sends ample warnings
      that eviction is in store
      should we disregard
      the hints and messages
      that we have chosen to ignore.

Comment: No comments. My thoughts are self-explanatory.

 

 

 

 

Quiet downtown Grand Junction, CO. Note the sculptures in the flower bed.

 

I really enjoy the beauty of wildflowers that seem to pop up on mountainsides, places where you wouldn't expect anything to grow.

 

 

The deep cliffs visible in the Colorado National Monument

 

 

National monument tour continues. You can easily drive it in less than 90 minutes.

Vignette this Month: A Deeper Understanding of Freedom

This month, I will take you to a deeper intellectual level unique for this section. The topic focuses on freedom, perceived and real.

I currently attend St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Park City, UT. The rector, The Reverend Charles Robinson, has a profound mind who constantly challenges me with his weekly lessons. These are vastly different from the traditional ones I have heard preached from a variety of pulpits over the decades. I am printing a small excerpt from a message he gave on March 19. If you find it mentally stimulating as I did, click on the link at the end to read more.

"Freedom, . . . stands in contrast to determinism or the absence of freedom. Someone is either free to choose or bound by determining factors. The truth, I suspect, is somewhere in the middle. It is found in the acknowledgement that our freedom is limited, at best, if it exists at all. Jean-Paul Sartre notes . . . that we are born with a great deal of our lives already determined. He notes . . . that we do not choose the economic class into which we are born, nor our nation, our family, the extent of our capacity to relinquish our strongest and deepest appetites, our predispositions to certain diseases (think genetic heritage), our race, our geographic location with its unique challenges, our language and the structures, traditions, culture and policies of our society. Add to this the schools in which we are and are not placed in childhood, the ways we are treated and the things we are taught by our families and influential adults, the totality of our life experiences as well as our DNA, genetic structure and our psychoneurological (brain) development. Or, as the neuroscientists will point out, "No two brains are exactly alike." We consciously chose none of these things; they we all chosen for us. . ." To read more, click here.


Trees grow out from the rocks - Colorado National Monument

. . . and more

Recommendations

Here are two for Durango, CO.

Carver Brewing Company: Yes, breweries can
produce great breakfasts as we discovered in Durango.
Some of the best pancakes I have ever tasted.

Dreams of Tibet is a fascinating store to visit if you have any interest in incense and that part of the world. I spent over 40 minutes there including a number of purchases. The owners also operate the Restaurant, Himalayan Kitchen which I did not have time to visit. Both establishments are just a few storefronts from the Carver Brewing Company.  

 

Downtown Durango is a fun place to visit–some excellent dining. There is an excitement in the air, especially at night.

River that passes through downtown Pagosa Springs

Pagosa Lake provided a great place for an impromptu picnic.

 

.......Chimney Rock points into the sky–this area had deep spiritual significance to area Native American.

Million Dollar Highway, CO: There are many tragic stories about this beautiful highway. In 1963 a minister
and his two daughters were traveling to preach at the congregational church in Silverton. An avalanche swept
them to their deaths.

 

      This was a view of the Deer Creek Reservoir as we departed for Colorado.

In late March, I enjoyed presenting a half-day tai chi workshop for some of the Utah instructors. They are
.........................................a wonderful, dedicated group of teachers.

 

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