John Muir


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Had no humor, not even drollery so common in small dogs.

He was cool as an old volcano with snow in its throat, now for the first time in eruption & not enough shaken with earthquake shocks & pouring forth fire

# & so the Lord loving us both we got back to camp. He was indeed a fellow creature a little boy in distress in guise of a dog

Not sour of countenance but preternaturally solemn. # Never cat-like with the small game he killed, without yelp or growl did the job with official decorum like dull boy [as if] doing his chores Even in eating when hungry he seemed to be only solemnly doing his duty in a dull world. Indian dogs hunt with grave deliberation & persistency

Shanks smooth & nimble enough but almost unnoticeably short though not hidden by hair

Had [ ] fare bread & water. Now only water or ice rather & before morning with scarce heat enough left in our throats to melt it

The tempest was abroad sweeping rack of the sea waves & rain across the heavens in boundless glorying triumphant exuberance of beauty & power

“Bridge with its dizzying perilous span” suspended, jaws of the gloomy abyss


His leading capability lay in silent endurance signless

So unlike the riant babbling character of small dogs. He moved in such measured way around camp [limits] he seemed to be in invisible harness

Saw the danger as I saw it, felt same fears, same joy in deliverance, brought same faculties to bear

Maker of man, also maker of dogs, this should render them interesting put into them a little of everything that goes to the making of humanity

X Gained a clear sense of oneness of life & destiny of all existence

Very high & stiff in his ways which well became his slow silent solemnity [solemn silence] but not his short legs

A dull winter dog that might keep well slow & heavy of movement as a polar bear turning head slowly to have joints only at the top while all his body moved as [if all] one muscle

A trace of sardonic [taciturny] as if he might be Scotch. Never in the leash gay, frolicsome. Anguish

Now all his troubles [are shaken off rubbed off tumbled] were blown off in a whirlwind of joy. He rolled over & over etc

Resource Identifier

MuirReel33 Notebook01 Img039.Jpeg

Contributing Institution

Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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