Cactus Flower Pilgrimage

cactus flower near Taos, NM

I have so many of these shots now. Too much beauty!

Went walking the other day, my usual (for now) four-mile hike. I was planning to detour down a large arroyo—animal tracks, burrows, skeletons, artifacts—when I remembered I’d seen some beautiful red cactus flowers of some kind just starting to open at the end of my usual trail, so I stuck to it. It’s a good thing I did. It’s hard to overstate the impact color like this has when you’re walking through the sagebrush. (How could I not have gone back to see these?)

The last few days, I’ve gone out after supper, so that I come back just after sunset. Four miles, kiddies! That’s just under an hour and a half—maybe 75+ minutes?—counting pit stops and water breaks and taking it all in. As I’ve said many times before, I almost never see anyone else. That’s a long time to be completely alone, surrounded by glory. It’s the number one reason I wanted to come here. Going out to walk most days is a good way to remind myself that everything is just damn peachy-fine and I should shut up and enjoy being a goddamn hero, you know?

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John Hamilton Farr lives in Taos, New Mexico, U.S.A. with his classical pianist wife. “Possibly the only place I can get away with this,” he says. As New York Times best-selling author James C. Moore (Bush’s Brain) put it in a review of John’s first book, Buffalo Lights is the work of a man attuned to the world who sees it differently than you and I and writes about it with a language and a vision of life that is impossible to ignore.” John is the author of BUFFALO LIGHTS, TAOS SOUL, ANOTHER DAY IN PARADISE, and THE HELEN CHRONICLES. He has been publishing online since 1996 (Zoo Zone, Farr Site, MacFaust, GRACK!, FarrFeed) and blogs regularly here at JHFARR.COM. See also → John’s Twitter profile, Amazon Author Page, video channel at YouTube, and website photos at SmugMug. To email John, please see CONTACT INFO on About page.  

  • Ken Webb June 13, 2013, 8:17 PM

    I liked your deleted post linking the flower to its underlying thorns. Beauty is best taken with a dose of irony, sweetness with a dash of salt.

    • JHF June 13, 2013, 8:52 PM

      Yes, I know. 🙂 And thank you. You can buy a print of that at my SmugMug gallery, BTW. (Even if I pull a post, the photo that went with it is still for sale.)

      Some things get taken down for reworking. Others turn out to be not what they seem, and I tell them to go home. This whole thing is an ongoing experiment. I’ll have more material available off-blog soon as well.

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