How I love mountains around me…
Well, okay, they aren’t mine in the sense that I own them, but they sure feel like they should be mine.
I’m an advocate for mountains, nature’s high rises. Somebody has to do it, after all, and I’m more than happy to speak-up for my towering friends.
Everyone has their favorite places, of course. Many can’t imagine life without the ocean, and it’s best if it’s right outside their door. They adore its vast expanse and soothing waves. You’d think the ocean would be my first love given that most of my childhood was spent on Long Island’s hilly north shore.
For an unknown reason the ocean never took hold in my heart.
Apparently boating was a favorite pastime when my mother was a girl. Too, I vaguely remember my father swimming literal miles while I sat on the beach and either watched or played in the sand.
I didn’t learn to swim until I was eighteen, and that was in a pool.
Yes, across this country, around this planet, there are countless places to reside, to put up your feet and call home: near the ocean, beside a lake, along a river, in the desert, or on the plains.
But, oh, my heart longs for where the peaks stand tall.
My love affair with this country’s ranges began with the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York when I was very young. They’re old mountains, beaten down considerably with time and holding more history than I can imagine.
Ancient, mysterious, and beautiful.
Over the years that followed I’ve had the privilege to visit other ranges around the country, some breathtaking, all majestic, and all beautiful.
It’s difficult to define the enchantment, but…
They’re big brothers to stand around me and keep me safe. They’re strong arms to hold me and assure me everything is okay.
Each peak lifts a piece of the sky, holds down the earth upon which it stands, and hides the wonders shielded behind its vast flanks. Sometimes solitary, other times standing shoulder-to-shoulder, always they command attention.
Majestic they are, and at their feet in shrouded valleys await mysteries beyond imagining, but that doesn’t stop me from trying. Thus, they often play a great part in my stories.
Where mountains stand are lakes cradled safe, rivers twisting about their girth, and waterfalls cascading in liquid music. Upon their slopes cluster trees, the nature of each changing with elevation. Nearer their summits sheer walls demand their strength be recognized. It’s there that glaciers might still be found.
I’m humble in their presence, for I recognize their power and magic, a magic stored within that reaches towards the earth’s core. To touch the rock that is a mountain’s soul is to feel the earth’s heartbeat beneath your fingertips.
My beloved mountains await my return and I dream often of their embrace.