Devil’s Tower, Badlands and on… WY.SD.

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

“Gossipers in such silence can be so loud and destructive”

Devil's Tower  
Prairie Dog  

I often think how full one’s Life can be, should be or is it? What truly makes one content? Or do some even think about it, instead projecting or being the object of Life’s missiles from others. I meet so many wonderful people, truly gems within this Journey, and yet at times so let down when some amazingly closest ones, I thought, decides to embark themselves on a destructive path toward many, even myself. Why? Boredom? Anger? Jealousy? Or maybe just a way to retaliate what once have been done to themselves? I just don’t know. I try not to think about it, invariably however, not that often but it happens, I “hear” or “read” this and that…

Devil's Tower  

We do not even live in a neighborhood and the concept of it all mystifies me. They are the words send by the other half of a whole that is not truly complete anymore as falling apart hidden by the poster smiling filled with lies. The concept escapes me even more when such individuals have built up this seemingly beautiful facade, adorned with much Spirituality, even Religion which I respect, as if the books bought and cleverly lined up on shelves for everyone to see would really penetrate one’s soul for only being there and not read, or read but forgotten as truly never understood.

Devil's Tower  

I am always so inclined to believe in the goodness of others as I experience it so often, and yet at times it is the bursting from a thorn that deflates all the common knowledge acquired over these past years. I try to understand what makes the core of one wanting to be silent through whispers about others, only to end up being so loud and destructive onto the soul toward who such insinuations and innuendos are directed at. It is not my World that fake stage that I have experienced at times, even if it’s human foundations goes back centuries, which I wish would not, as my only hope has always been for such stage to self destruct letting true Friendship and Love only to emerge. We are still fortunately living in a better World than most, vast plains, much still empty lands, peaks and valleys with no footprints if only we can reach them.

Devil's Tower  

We are still better off indeed because we are still free and able to think, to go through our own emotions and take the appropriate steps to move on forward. Stay true to ourselves always on that shiny path, avoiding the shoulders of obscurity some decided to cloud upon for those same reasons that will always escape my understanding. I will not wish for the impossible, I will only wish for all my Friends and Loved ones to also remain unharmed by such adverse human elements… if only they would realize their doings, so blatant and so corrosive toward others… their neighbors.

Devil's Tower  

“There are things in Nature that engender and awful quiet in the Heart of Man, Devils’ Tower is one of them” N. Scott Momaday

Just some thoughts to maybe nowhere, after a couple truly great rides exploring this part of the country. “Devil’s Tower” and the “Badlands”, the little town of “Scenic”, population “10”. “Devil’s Tower”, I can call it a surprise as one rides up and down a bit some mountains, a flat space following, and suddenly here is this “thing” protruding out of the ground. I am sure and know I am not the only one wanting to know how did this happen? I would have loved to see the face of the first human seeing it as never before, maybe as much as the first traveler seeing the Grand Canyon. 

Devil's Tower  
Devil's Tower  
Devil's Tower  
Devil's Tower  

It was a fine afternoon. There is a pathway going around the tower which I walked, meaning “I” by myself, as of course being a National Park, again dogs are not allowed. Spirit was however fine, always in the shade in his car providing much “security” for Old Faithful. I did watch some of the climbers reach the top as their Friends at the bottom, following them with binoculars, cheered and applauded when they went over the final ledge, meaning they had reached the top. The days are still long but darkness is arriving a bit faster these days, including a chill in the air as soon as the sun passes over the other side, it was quite a sight witnessing such a sunset with the tower standing up… as a sore thumb… not so sore.

Devil's Tower  

It was on the next day or so to the Badlands. This time East of Spearfish. It was an unpaved road passed Scenic where we did stop. Scenic with many photos which I will here get back to soon. Having seen so much of the country it took me a bit to appreciate the Badlands, to feel that land so different than others and yet seeing geological similarities even to the foothills shapes of Big Bend. It was a day with very little traffic, most I imagine wanting to stay on the paved roads, and the solitude, the day without a cloud, the wind playing it’s soft inviting music, all reminded me of this Poem I received just a few days ago and finding it so appropriate to post it here along with the images. It is one to read slowly, maybe even at loud as I have many times to let those words penetrate within the Soul their true meaning, true meaning so rare these days, but one we personally experience on a daily basis.


As you set out for Ithaka
hope the voyage is a long one,
full of adventure, full of discovery.
Laistrygonians and Cyclops,
angry Poseidon—don’t be afraid of them:
you’ll never find things like that on your way
as long as you keep your thoughts raised high,
as long as a rare excitement
stirs your spirit and your body.
Laistrygonians and Cyclops,
wild Poseidon—you won’t encounter them
unless you bring them along inside your soul,
unless your soul sets them up in front of you.


Hope the voyage is a long one.
May there be many a summer morning when,
with what pleasure, what joy,
you come into harbors seen for the first time;
may you stop at Phoenician trading stations
to buy fine things,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
sensual perfume of every kind—
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
and may you visit many Egyptian cities
to gather stores of knowledge from their scholars.

Badlands Badlands
Badlands Badlands

Keep Ithaka always in your mind.
Arriving there is what you are destined for.
But do not hurry the journey at all.
Better if it lasts for years,
so you are old by the time you reach the island,
wealthy with all you have gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaka to make you rich.


Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey.
Without her you would not have set out.
She has nothing left to give you now.


And if you find her poor, Ithaka won’t have fooled you.
Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,
you will have understood by then what these Ithakas mean.
~ C.P. Cavafy ~


If you find yourself perusing this site extensively, please, consider purchasing prints, T shirts, merchandise or making a contribution above.

Thank you and be well…

Ara & Spirit

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • Tumblr
  • Technorati

8 Responses to “Devil’s Tower, Badlands and on… WY.SD.”

  1. Louise Says:

    The poem is enhanced by your photos, and it made me smile to read it here. Thanks!

  2. Colorado Kid Says:

    Great photos, as usual. The poem is also a keeper, much to think about.

    Your journey nourishes us all and keeps us in balance.

  3. Marti Says:

    Hi Ara,

    Although I don’t find time to drop in as much as I’d like to, I really enjoy reading your posts when I do. They are always timely and inspire me. Where are you going to be in a couple of weeks. We will be in Jackson WY at Cowboy Village to start the Grand Teton National Park workshop. Thought if you are in the area, we could say howdy and give Spirit a pat.


  4. Max Cactus Says:

    It is easy to have friendly, peaceful interactions on a superficial level with acquaintances. The difficulty comes from deeper long standing relationships where you have to deal important matters. The hardest part is when there are two people making a decision where there is no way to blend an accommodating solution.

  5. Rudy Tenorio Says:

    Ara, thank you for your pictures and ideas. I believe that people are naturally not good, they are innocent when born and loose it soon after. You will find good people and really good people in your travels and they are to be commended and truly admired. However, most of us are just neutral and hopefully will react positively if and when the need arises. It takes work to be good let’s try it.

  6. Lorene Says:

    Mr. Ara and companion Spirit,
    My true friend in Bozeman, Montana sent me the information about your site and thought I would enjoy following your adventures. She was right on and I beleve you and I are kindred spirits. The wonderment of what you see to share in your photos and how you put into words your thoughts is magical.

    Thank you for sharing,

  7. Madonna Says:

    This is my first time to your blog, but not the last. Your pictures and quotes are inspirational. Last year we were at Devil’s Tower and all the areas you are going through now. I was so overwhelmed it all. Could stay in the Black Hills forever. Thank you for your blog.

  8. Sandra Davey Says:

    Thank you for your thoughts on self destructive friends. I’ve just last week, walk away from a 28 yr. friendship. Wanting to be an adult in this society is not encouraged, and for some, never achieved. For those people… it seems mid life crises is the only thing they can expect. Or in my friends case, she is progressively more selfish, more demanding as if reverting back to childhood. We have taken different paths. I need to be around people who want improvement in their mind and soul and bodies. So that they have positive and generous natures. Unfortunately, in a long life one gets barnacled over with the mere shells of friendship and it is difficult without hurting oneself to scrape them off. Be Safe, my friend.

Leave a Reply