Mountains make me feel as if I’m home.
I laugh when I read stories or watch movies where someone sees the ocean for the first time. They stare, amazed. I think, it’s not that great.
Yet, I stare, amazed when mountains surround me with snow still on the peaks in the middle of July.
I’ve talked about how particular experiences in a writers life form their ‘writers mind’, like, Wordsworth’s spots of time.
It seems the northern terrain has helped shape mine.
I’ve traveled a good amount in my short life, though not nearly as much and as far as I wish I could. And yet my favorite place i’ve ever been is Alaska and the Yukon.
Trees that overtake a mountain side and a view so vast I don’t remember to breathe. At times I feel as though when I left Alaska I left home to come back to Texas. Why did it matter so much to me? It’s not just the sublime nature of every view, beauty can be found in so many places. And it wasn’t just Alaska, but the Yukon.
The call of the wind. Jack London knew there was something special about that place. And maybe it was because I knew he wrote his book there, or maybe because I romanticize everything, or maybe because when you stand atop a mountain you not only look over the world, you can be still. It’s the experience of clarity, peace, and the truest sense of home I’ve ever known. You can’t look up without seeing a mountain.
When I write I think of the mountains. I believe even as writers we’re not as observant as we like to tell ourselves. I could have easily thought the view from these places were amazing and left it at that, where later it would just be a nice memory. I let myself watch for more; experience more and it’s become a part of the way I think and ultimately the way I write.
We often miss those moments where the world shows us order. When the warmth of the sun touches your skin after being inside for hours. When the breeze that slides your hair off your shoulder creates a chorus in the trees.
For me the mountains are extraordinary, which I realize is a much more obvious observance, yet I can tell you the people I was with don’t remember it the way I do.
Pay attention, especially to the mundane experiences. Often they become the most critical– the most beautiful.
(Incase anyone ever wondered why my featured images are mostly of nature, even when it didn’t relate to what I was writing, yep, you guessed it. The images are from my trip.)