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test-traveler/polar star

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desks
salt water solution
polar star
crumbling
miracle manor
lithium
woodstock nation
63 frozen sirloins
cleansing the senses
main street


© photo by Dona McAdams 2000

scene 5

miracle manor

I always had the idea that the desert was for broken people, wretched, burned out Angelenos, uneducated shit-kickers on their last legs, running from the law or the IRS, hiding out in run down shacks, cradling a bottle of Jack Daniels, waiting for the bad luck to blow over in a torrent of desert wind.

I returned to the High Desert again and again to commiserate with survivors. It takes time to have a heightened awareness of the plants and living creatures in this wasteland.

I stayed at Miracle Manor in Desert Hot Springs near Twenty Nine Palms, Indian Cove and Hidden Valley, Lost Horse, Jumbo Rocks, Sheep Pass, Black Rock Canyon and Joshua Tree Lane. The terrain of the dead and defeated was also the landscape of renewal.

A site for recovering souls: potential dangers, common sense, merciless heat, patience, mystery and mysticism, survival and continuity: The Yucca Night Lizard, Jackrabbit, Kangaroo Rat, Stinkbug, Burrowing Owl, and Tarantula are my friends.

Each with a sense of its essential needs and tools for overwhelming their prey or avoiding their natural predators.

The Desert Dance

The Yucca Night Lizard lives under the bark of a decaying Yucca Tree fitting its narrow body in small crevices and feeding on termites.

The Kangaroo Rat survives on seed stored in its cheeks.

The Jack Rabbit blends into the environment and remains still. It has excellent eyesight, hearing and powerful legs.

The Stinkbug freezes in a handstand at the slightest fear or disturbance. It emits a strong odor that repels its predators.

The Burrowing Owl hangs out in burrows. It coos in mellow tones and  bobs, bows and cackles when agitated.

The Tarantula bites painfully when provoked but is not poisonous. It normally sits in a burrow for years waiting.

My friends: fragile and complex. A dashing lizard, a Joshua Tree bud, a dying Rose. Life and death; everything is recycled here.

 

 

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