One thing we have plenty of in the San Luis Valley is horizon. It’s one of our best things. Once in a while it gets interrupted by a mountain or trees, but for the most part, anyone looking for a horizon can just turn and look in the other direction and have their horizon needs satisfied. For me, it’s one of the great things about where I live. I like to look at a wide and distant horizon that ends in mountains. It puts my heart at rest and sets my spirit free, corny as that sounds. It’s one of the reasons I like winter. There is a lot less interference from those green bushy things.

I take a lot of photos of the horizon when I’m out rambling with the dogs, usually because the skies here are so amazing (and the ending in mountains thing).



Storm Coming into Town


Driving North from Taos


Rabbitbrush Flats


Early Spring


I saw a man pursuing the horizon;
Round and round they sped.
I was disturbed at this;
I accosted the man.
“It is futile,” I said,
“You can never —”
“You lie,” he cried,
And ran on.
Stephen Crane


…and Hell

In other horizontal news, today is the first anniversary of the Women’s March in which so many women wore pink hats resembling cat ears. I have very mixed feelings about it. I have friends marching in their local march, believing their marching will make a statement, a difference. I honestly don’t think it does, will, or could except to themselves and that’s completely respectable to me.


All my best wishes and more power to the pussy hat wearing multitudes, but I’m not joining you.

I remember in the 70’s my best friend was about to join the Woman’s March (a bra burning activity combined with marching on a downtown street). First, she had small breasts, second, she made a lot more money than I did. Burning something that I needed and cost me a day’s work was AGAINST my personal liberation. Third, I thought it was bullshit. “Men” have always known women are around. Some men (in my experience) have regarded women as human beings and equals without even trying to. Some men have viewed women as mental and physical inferiors. Some men regard women as prey. Some men are just assholes.

All of this can be said of women, too. I will now speak that which should not be said, “Sarah Palin.”

I was working at a law firm while all this was going on in the 70s. Back then, when my boss wanted to take me to lunch after I’d done some really good work for him taking telephone depositions of Mafia members, he had an existential meltdown. Should he or shouldn’t he? He was afraid he was being unfaithful to his wife.

That brings me to the essential question of “rights.” Rights can’t be “given” from one person to another. Rights have to be taken. What hampers that process? Ultimately, physical strength. That’s why we have laws to protect the weak.

There have been women managers in my life just as ego-driven and difficult as male managers; I’ve even been hit on by a couple of the women who were my bosses with the implication that if I…, then… Did they “learn” this from men, or is it just the natural outgrowth of physical desire and power?

I don’t know.

Or is this protest simply against the current president? That’s another thing with a big glitch. He truly does not care at all what we do or how we feel about him. I think there’s only one (legal) protest that might make any difference and that is to vote.

Meanwhile, later, I’m going to pursue the horizon.


33 thoughts on “Heaven…

  1. After a year I think the protest is against the president. The main theme has now changed a lot and many have replaced it. I find it always a good thing when people unite against something. It might not achieve anything, it might, but it has been said and registered. We are still banning the bomb, which was the fashionable thing to do when I was a teenager, but the thought lingers on, although it will probably never happen.
    You really live in horizon place. I am glad for every horizon I see, no matter how far and big, because where I grew up they did not exist (Londo).

    • I think this particular protest has always been against the president. I’m against him, too, but I can’t imagine marching in a sea of people all taller than I am (talk about no horizon!). I am also not sure I share their beliefs, so… I actually participated in my first ever demonstration last year — the March for Science. There were Antifa people there, dressed in black and pretty scary looking and that’s when I realized (I already knew) that I’d rather be them than a little old lady limping around with a sign. At heart, I’m not non-violent. That’s another problem with joining in on these things. It’s better if I don’t.

  2. You have some beautiful pictures, Martha. These are wonderful. Your eyes and mind can stretch…to the horizon…that’s how I see it. Completely love it.

  3. I never burned a bra either. A good one was EXPENSIVE. Now of course, i have smaller fake ones, but back in those days, they were a whole lot bigger and entirely real!

    I don’t know whether or not all the marching helps or not. I think maybe LONG term, they might, but regardless, I’m not up to it, so it’s a moot point for me.

    We have horizons too. I like them best in the mountains or on the beach.

    • I think one good side effect of the marches been more women running for office just like the science march inspired more scientists to run for office, but basically I’m just not a non-violent person nor am I any kind of “joiner” so, even if I could handle the walking and standing around, I would just feel more alienated than I do already. 🙂 I think pursuing a horizon is a better bet for me.

  4. Beautiful horizons.
    And wisdom is recognizing the best use of your own time and resources. For some, the camaraderie and symbolism of a march matters, and for other of us, its not our thing.

    Whether I march or not, I support this years message: we are paying attention and we will vote!

    • I think winter is the most beautiful time here — and this year we haven’t had snow which is too bad because then there is white, gold, blue and red from the red willow trees. People think summer is “colorful” but only the stuff they plant in their yards. Out there fall and winter are the most colorful times. Summer colors are subtle — wild iris, primrose, wild flowers in a mass of green. Pastures of wild sunflowers. All lovely, too, but I like the winter light and the emptiness. ❤

  5. Heaven: absolutely. You captured my unformed thoughts about why I find beauty in western deserts that some consider desolate: there is always a horizon where the desert brushes up against the mountains; and I can see forever in any direction.
    Hell: my feelings about being in a women’s march. While I admire those who take the time to express solidarity and bring attention to women’s issues, it’s not for me. And I agree with you that the most important march is to the ballot box and that we women, too, have imperfections. However, there is some evidence that the march a year ago resulted in more women running for office; and that same march galvanized my granddaughter into political activism at the grass roots level.

    • I think that the forces that inspired your granddaughter inspired a lot of people, especially young ones (yay!) and I think that’s wonderful. I’m just too solitary to get caught up in the enthusiasm that thrills some people. Also I’m not, intrinsically, non-violent. I participated in my first ever march last spring; I Marched for Science. It was OK, cool in its way, and I still believe in it, but it felt to me like a wasted morning. I wonder if part of that is being my age. I look at time a lot differently than I did at 19 or 20. Even then the only demonstration I joined was the first Earth Day. We didn’t march. We just stood on the Colorado College campus and listened to speakers, but I was really 100% behind that. 🙂

      • I, too, am too solitary to enjoy participating in mass action. After my first husband returned from Vietnam, I walked with him in an anti-war march in Salt Lake City. I found it exhilarating and a bit frightening because vast numbers of pro-war people lined the way and were not nice. That was my only experience with rallying and marching.

        • Those were crazy times. I have had Vietnam Vet friends (old guys) who thought the protestors were not nice. I wonder sometimes if the polarization we’re experiencing now didn’t begin back then.

          I never took a stand for or against the war. The food on my table was the fruit of my dad’s work for the Department of Defense. He didn’t like the war, but even though he was an adviser to the Joint Chiefs and has a lot of important information on which his opinions were based, they didn’t want to hear, “This is a losing proposition.”

  6. It is just the natural outgrowth of physical desire and power. Decades ago, when I was a jr. electrical engineer, my supervisor was straight but I got the job because one of the senior engineers there had a thing for the woman I was renting a room from and he leaned on my future sup. to hire me. We also had a female “jr. engineer” who had to ask me what Ohm’s Law was who managed to get the scientist she was working under wrapped around her finger. Not the only workplace where I’ve seen that happen.

    If most supervisors were women, guys would try EXACTLY the same thing.

    Who has the power in a supervisor/employee relationship is not always clear. Take a guy who is technically competent but romantically challenged and put an attractive, strong, and manipulative woman in as his subordinate and it won’t be the guy who is in charge.

    I am not saying that’s the reality in a majority of instances. Sexual demands ARE usually the “play if you want your pay” routine from a male superior. But do not imagine for a heartbeat that all women are 100% innocent of using sex (or even just teasing it) for career enhancement. A strong, goal driven woman can just consider it using all her resources to accomplish an objective.


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