the dark cloud of progress

“For there is a cloud on my horizon. A small dark cloud no bigger than my hand. Its name is Progress.” — Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire

Edward Abbey (with Balanced Rock in background)

Edward Abbey saved my life as a young man. I have absolutely no doubt about it. In his writing, he really wanted people to leave behind the cars, buses, airplanes, air-conditioned houses, and other forms of “syphillization” to go out in the wilderness, spend some time alone in the heat, and sweat, bleed, pray, cry.

He wrote the above quote in his 1950s journals while a park ranger at (what now is called) Arches National Park outside Moab, Utah. Those journals were published as Desert Solitaire in the late 1960s.

I do love the guy, and I am ashamed. That “dark cloud” was nothing compared to the storm that hit us.

About blpawelek

Dad, hiker, writer.
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