I drove into a sun-drenched,
Met the horizon swallowing day.
Hiked for miles to
disappear into the stretch of land.
In blankets of clouds I stood.
Casting a line
to catch shadow puppets
swimming in valley streams,
patterns snagging on reflections.
Surrounded in trees saturated in lichen green,
pillared stalks of the century plant,
dirt threaded in golden grass,
branches twisting into gnarled sculptures,
clawing at the blue tarp sky,
stirring colors to paint
the sweet carnival.
While the earth begged to be noticed,
dwarfing the demons in our heads.
“The reason people turn to screens hasn’t changed much over the years. They remain mirrors that reflect a species in retreat from the burdens of modern consciousness, from boredom and isolation and helplessness. It’s natural for children to seek out a powerful tool to banish these feelings. But the only reliable antidote to such burdens, based on my own experience, is not immersion in brighter and mightier screens but the capacity to slow our minds and pay sustained attention to the world around us. This is how all of us – whether artists or scientists or kindergartners – find beauty and meaning in the unceasing rush of experience. It’s how we develop empathy for other people, and the humility to accept our failures and keep struggling.”
–Steve Almond, “The iPads Are Coming!” The New York Times Magazine, Sunday, June 23, 2013
This is a candid photo of my son last summer when we went RVing in the Adirondacks, where technology didn’t work. He stood there for a long while. As a parent, I hope to witness many more moments like this.