John Muir


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of departure. Like comets in the far points of their orbits, plants and animals seem to be moving out of all specific limits, but by paths and motions calculable, or otherwise they return to whence they set out. [Jan.] 4th. W. C. Clouds cum .30 Warm, balmy, bright creation is this day. The purple and yellow of the soil and of the old plant stems is rapidly fading in the deepening green of young life. The little triangular rock fern, Gymnograma triangularis, is unrolling its tiny fronds in sweetly arranged knots and mantling along the rocks of Cascade Creek. I do not know of any fern that has so wide a vertical range as this hardy and contented gold powdered fellow. I have met it on the lower Joaquin and at all altitudes on the Sierra as far as Yosemite. Sunset sky purple of the most refined quality. Dry Creek, on whose happy bank my cabin stands, is subject to sudden swellings and overflows in the rainy season. Then it becomes a majestic stream, almost a river, with serious and confident gestures, curving about its jutting banks and horseshoe bends, carrying fence and bridge timbers, logs and houses within reach of its ephemeral power. In the course of a few hours after the close of a rain it will retire within its banks, leaving many flat, smooth, fresh sheets of sand. I like to watch the first writings upon these fresh new-made leaflets of Nature’s own making. One of these pages was made last night and was already written upon when I saw it this morning. It is

Date Original



Original journal dimensions: 14 x 18 cm.

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Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist