"Every mesa was duplicated by a cloud mesa, like a reflection, which lay motionless above it or moved slowly up from behind it. Those cloud formations seemed to be always there, however hot and blue the sky. sometimes they were flat terraces, ledges of vapour. . . .The great tables of granite set down in an empty plain were inconceivable without attendant clouds, which were part of them, as the smoke is part of the censer, or the foam of the wave.
--Willa Cather, Death Comes for the Archbishop
The above is a quote from one of my favorite books--ever. I probably reread it every year and for someone as busy reading new books such as myself, you have a sense of how important this book is to me. It is considered a novel, but is based on a real person, Father Jean Lamy who, after New Mexico was annexed to the United States, became the first archbishop of the territory. I'm sure he had his faults, history never serves its heroes very well. Fiction on the otherhand truly elevates Father Lamy's story. Death Comes for the Archbishop in my opinion is more about friendship, friendship in a magical landscape. And that landscape was the exact place I was last week.
You see I forgot my camera, so until AROHO sistas can send me some pics. I'll just use paintings to give you an idea of the terrain.
"I felt reluctant to leave those brutal and rugged mountains, the dry, scorching plains, to abandon for good that long dim trail that lay over the sandy desert like some big lazy snake asleep in the sun. . . . The life is wonderful, strange--the fascination of it clutches me like some unseen animal--it seems to whisper, 'Come back, you belong here, this is your real home.' "
--N.C. Wyeth, 1904