Of course there are experiences of landscape that will always resist articulation, and of which words offer only a remote echo—or to which silence is by far the best response. Nature does not name itself. Granite does not self-identify as igneous. Light has no grammar. Language is always late for its subject. Sometimes on the top of a mountain I just say, “Wow.”
Robert Macfarlane lives in Cambridge and is author of The Wild Places and The Old Ways. The text that appears here is adapted from his book Landmarks, forthcoming from Trafalgar in June.
The Worn Wear truck arrived at the University of Oregon today and it was fun to be there and watch them look over the used gear that people brought, providing repair services and offering suggestions. The brand was irrelevant and you could have one item repaired for free – a great deal. They are here for a sustainability conference being put on by the business college and from what I could tell their work today will be a hit. I had a new velcro set up installed on the sleeve of my rain jacket that I keep in my office. h/t to Patagonia for doing this. You can follow the Worn Wear Wagon as it makes its way around the country. If they stop nearby, take advantage! As the sticker says, “If it’s broke, fix it!”
We took the kids out to see the lights in town tonight, hitting the usual spots. The image is of a house that has their lights synchronized to music that is being broadcast on a lower-band FM station (90.1 in this case). It’s a pretty neat set-up and makes me want to try something similar sometime . . . kind of.
Yesterday afternoon we took the kids to the play A Christmas Carol that was put on by the Oregon Contemporary Theatre. It was a great production in a small, intimate setting. It brought me to tears at the end.