Thoughts While Hiking

Rio Grande Gorge near Taos, NM

Two days before the solar eclipse

The first thing is, there are no mistakes. Anything I do results from all the forces acting on me at the time. I can look back and say something like, “I’ll bet she would have let me” or “I should have bought that motorcycle when I had the chance,” but why? No way could I have acted differently. In the telling of a story, maybe. If an entirely different person than who I was then switched places with me in a made-up world that can’t exist because no time repeats itself, the outcome might be different. But all of this is steenking little movies in our brains that fall to pieces in the light.

The second things is, what about bad habits? All those things I learned along the way when I was young and stupid? What came to me was “shine more brightly.”(I know, I know…) There’s no way I could teach that, either. If you’re like me, God help you and you have to bleed a lot. I don’t know how it happens, but then you get this shot of grace. There’s just a crack and something happens. You know you’re loved and you can do it and soon you’re happy with a project. You’re being who you are, who you were always meant to be, the reason that you got pushed out when and where you did with those poor fools who raised you without thinking. When that happens, the ties to those bad habits weaken and eventually dissolve. The brighter you burn, the more freedom you earn.

All this goes away from coloring outside the lines and getting scared, but sometimes I remember. Maybe the music works, or I look at where I am and see I’ve dreamed a perfectly good life and I’m the only one whose judgment matters. Good times on the frontier, folks. Exactly where I want to be.

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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.  

  • Jim Moore October 24, 2014, 12:39 PM

    You still should’ve bought the damned motorcycle, pal.

    • JHF October 24, 2014, 12:54 PM

      Ya think? It was a good one. Older BMW 650cc thumper owned by a real fanatic who had it all set up just right. Cheap, too. I still want one. I still want a lot of things!

  • Stephen Slottow October 24, 2014, 3:34 PM

    Interesting–your first point seems to be that you believe in postdestination.

    • JHF October 24, 2014, 4:09 PM

      Maybe it’s the difference between “I should’ve, could’ve [done this or that]” and “one might approach the situation differently.”

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