Sunday, March 02, 2014

learning to fly (lesson eight)

"But what I loved most from the first training flight was the neatness, the sense of everything in its place. The farms in their squared sections, the quartering county roads oriented to the cardinal compass points, windbreaks casting long shadows westward in the morning, the round bales and scattered cattle and horses as perfect in their patterns as sprays of stars and holding the same ruddy sun on their flanks, the pickups in the yards, the trailer parks in diagonal rows, the tract homes repeating the sidelit angles of roofs, baseball diamond and kart track ovals, even the junkyards just so, ragged lines of rusted cars and heaps of scrap metal as inevitable and lovely as the cottonwoods limning the rivers, casting their own long shadows. The white plume from the stack of a power plant tended eastward on the morning wind as pure as washed cotton. This was then. from up here there was no misery, no suffering, no strife, just pattern and perfection. The immortal stillness of a landscape painting. Nor ever can those trees be bare... Even the flashing lights of an emergency vehicle progressing along the track of a highway pulsed with the reassuring rhythm of a cricket."

- Peter Heller, The Dog Stars

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