John Muir


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Circa Date

circa 1887



as a subdued subordinate [& manageable] feature [in] of the vast harmonious landscape [grand harmony of the whole view and] thus every attempt to appreciate any one feature is beaten down by the over whelming influence of all the others [the surrounding mountains]. & as if this were not enough, lo, in the sky arises another mountain range with topography as rugged & looking substantial [substantia] as the one beneath it, snowy peaks & domes shadowing Yosemite Valleys [& lake basins & lawns like a reflection of the landscape beneath or rather] another version of the snowy Sierra [some coming appearing suddenly like] a new creation heralded [with mighty pomp of fire & heaven shaking by a thunderstorm. How fiercely devoutly wild [earnest] is nature in the midst of [all] her beauty loving tenderness, painting lilies, watering them, caressing them with gentle hand, going from flower to flower like a gardener while building rock mountains & cloud mountains full of [shattering] lightning [& rain] [a girl in her pet garden plot while building stormy cloud lands riven with dazzling thunderbolts shaking steadfast mountains to their foundations with the roar of the rushing storm] & rain. Gladly we run for shelter


beneath an overhanging cliff & examine the reassuring ferns & mosses, gentle love tokens growing in [the] cracks & chinks [of the rocks]. Daisies, too & ivesias confiding wild children [of the wilderness] [mountains] too small to fear. To these this [our] heart goes home & the voices of the storm become [grow] gentle. [in our ears] Now [the] the sun breaks forth [shines again] & [a] fragrant steam arises, the birds are [come] out [to] singing on the edges of the groves, [everything rejoices]. The west is flaming in gold & purple ready for the ceremony of the sunset, & back [home] I go to camp with my notes, & pictures, the best of them printed in my mind as dreams [deep in the flesh engraven. My soul pictured too in colors like the sky] A [grand] fruitful day without measured beginning or ending [no ending, no beginning, a good true] terrestrial eternity. A gift of good God. Wrote to my mother & a few friends [as Mrs. Carr & Prof. Butler] mountain hints to each [all of them. Friends] They seem as near as if within voice-reach or touch. The deeper the solitude the less the sense of loneliness & the farther we are away, the nearer our friends. Now bread & tea [& spruce] fir bed

Date Occurred


Resource Identifier

MuirReel31 Notebook07 Img045.jpg

Contributing Institution

Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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