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A Voice in the Wilderness

As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there's a twilight where everything remains seemingly unchanged, and it is in such twilight that we must be aware of change in the air, however slight, lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness. -- William O. Douglas

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Mountain Air Man - Thinking of Daddy

My Dad loved to hike. He was born in the mountains and that is where he grew up. He was raised on a little hundred acre ranch that his father named, 'La Cienega' - 'the marsh' - because of a crystal-clear stream that coursed through the
verdant, lush valley where their home was nestled.

This picture is significant to me for so many reasons because it reminds me of my father. The mountains combined with the double rainbows are a powerful message to me from Heaven.

I can just see Daddy with a silhouette of his back to me as he stands in the foreground of this picture. He is wearing his beat-up cowboy hat and grey & red plaid cowboy shirt while leaning on his walking stick as he takes in that beautiful vista. His shoulders are slightly stooped thanks to the march of time. He moves a little slower but his eyes still twinkle with wonder-filled memories from the days of his youth.

He might comment on the vista before him and then go into some story that reminisced about his younger days like the times he would wait in trees for an unsuspecting horse and then quickly alight onto its back as it passed under him. Hanging on for dear life he would cling to the startled horse with nothing else but two fist-fulls of the horse's mane. He would keep his his head close to the horse's neck - to avoid being knocked off by a tree branch, and he only used his legs to guide the horse through the little ranch’s back country until it eventually tired. Together, they rode like the wind.

I can see Daddy flex his right arm and clench his fist the way he did when he was a body builder. Raising his eye - and with a quick nod of his head, he looks at me and smiles. I can hear him saying, 'when I was strong and nothing could stop me!' He smells of sweat and earth.

I believe everything happens for a reason and there is no such thing as coincidence. Perhaps happening upon Ray's blog today is just my Dad's way of reaching out to me from eternity. This breath taking picture reminds me of the many words of advice, encouragement and comfort my father said to me through out my life.

'Everything is okay. There is always hope. As long as you never give up on yourself - as long as you never give up on each other, everything is going to be fine. I believe in you. I love you.'

In response, I say, 'Daddy, I am listening and I do hear you. I love you and I really miss you. I am humbled at the privilege of being your son.'

I just know my Dad would love this place and I want to visit it some day to see with my own eyes. When I do, Daddy will be right there with me.

To honor my father, I will keep searching for all that is good in life. Celebrating it will endure as the ultimate tribute to his legacy of decency and this great man's abiding love for his family.

I happened upon Ray Rozelle's Sierra Mountains Ca. blog - his pictures are incredible. People, please visit his site and encourage Mr. Rozelle to publish his work - will ya?

His work is nothing short of inspirational. What an eye! Ray, I want a poster of this picture. Thank you so much of re-kindling the warm memory of my father again in me because today is when I needed it the most.

By the way Ray, two of his dearest friends on the planet, and two people whom he used to hike with regularly were of Italian descent. They had great fun in each other's company.

I just met you today and already, you are an old friend.
Thank you and God bless you my friend.

J. Abran


At Fri Sep 02, 04:51:00 PM MDT, Blogger M said...

yes, that one picture is awe-inspiring. nature at its most majestic...untouched by man's callousness

At Fri Sep 02, 05:47:00 PM MDT, Blogger M said...

maybe you missed the "no woman, no cry" post on my site. was (partly) thinking of you when i posted that, lol :-)

At Fri Sep 02, 07:03:00 PM MDT, Blogger atoep said...

That is an breathtaking picture.

At Fri Sep 02, 07:12:00 PM MDT, Blogger Johnny Jazz said...

Had a look at the blog you recommended, magical.

Like your blog, by the way. Keep up the good work. As a Brit it's sometimes hard to connect with N. American blogs, but I know where your coming from.

At Sat Sep 03, 08:58:00 AM MDT, Blogger iamnasra said...

Such heartfelt words...Im sure your father may God Bles him...hearing this beautiful words of yours...His proud of you looking at you and saying how blessed is to have son like you

Thank you for sharing thiese words with us ...You just remined me of my Dad and his love with the ocean

At Sat Sep 03, 10:41:00 AM MDT, Blogger Cricketina said...

What a beautiful tribute! It's such a breath of fresh air amidst all the heartbreaking stories about the hurricane. Your blog always has such a balance to it.

Thanks, J!


At Sun Sep 04, 12:16:00 AM MDT, Blogger SaffronSaris said...

This photo is lovely. Hope that the victims of Hurricane Katrina can see the rainbow at the end of the storm

At Sun Sep 04, 06:59:00 AM MDT, Blogger UARIDI said...

Thank you J for giving us a glimpse of your Daddy. I know you will see him some day.

I love the picture

At Sun Sep 04, 03:50:00 PM MDT, Blogger Liquidplastic said...

Way to go J! Inspiration from any where is a blessing. Such a beautiful picture. Thank you.


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