John Muir


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dressing and getting fully awakened. 18th S.E. 5. Clouds .05. Most lovely day. “The ant his labor hath begun.” The bee is on the wing. The spiders are very busily engaged in building and weaving. Nature’s song is daily enriched with the singing wings of flies, and the air is sweeter with the fragrance of added flowers. Nemophila maculata came to-day. Stigmas are small and black like spiders’ eyes. Cor. v[ery] delicate. Only the fingers of God are sufficiently gentle and tender for the folding and unfolding of petaled bundles of flowers. Gorgeous sunset sky. 19[th]. N.W. 3. Clouds none, or a few scarce discernible touches. Earth’s green mantle rapidly deepening. Three flowers to-day, Dodecatheon, Ranunculus, and Crucifer[ae]. The construction of a very fine quality of spider web is going on rapidly at present. A species of spider making an elegant circular web upon the dead branches of Erigonum has the power of invisibility by rapid swinging in the center of its web. All the bird music labor of the plains is at present laid upon the larks, but their hearts are in the work, and it is easy for them. The hills about Castle Creek, Lily Hollow, and Twenty Hill Hollow are composed of porous stratified lavas and quartz and slaty sands mixed and coarsely conglomerated and easily acted upon by rain. The high winds of winter, armed with rain globes, cut rapidly into the soil which is not protected by binding grasses. These hills are depressed about from 1/8 to ¼ inch per season, as shown by the naked tops of perennial roots which have to strike deeper and deeper every year. It is greatly interesting to observe how the Lord removes mountains without destroying a single plant inhabitant. Marine floating plants rise and sink upon the waves of the sea, and so also sink and rise these land flowers upon the hill waves of the plain. 20[th] N.W. 10. Clouds .03 1 1.2 hrs. mist in morning. Lost with my sheep. Saw small beautiful graybird among the rocks of Niagara Creek. 21. N.W. 30. Clouds 05. Cool, bright, and breezy. 22. S.E. 8. Clouds .05. Cool. Squirrels, ants and lizards engaged in mending their dwellings. In walking the plains now one sees a

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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