Look! are not the fields covered with a delightful verdure? Is there not something in the woods and groves, in the rivers and clear springs, that soothes, that delights, that transports the soul? At the prospect of the wide and deep ocean, or some huge mountain whose top is lost in the clouds, or of an old gloomy forest, are not our minds filled with a pleasing horror? Even in rocks and deserts is there not an agreeable wildness? How sincere a pleasure is it to behold the natural beauties of the earth!
--Albert Bierstadt (1830–1902), California Springhttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
And from Heather King:
But the place that really haunts me is The Beehive Hut, on the Aran Island of Inishmore, in Galway Bay. The hut built and maintained by my friend Benny McCabe of Dublin, who, among other things, is a traveler and citizen of the world, a tango dancer, a poet, a political activist, and a psychotherapist. "What would you do there?" a friend to whom I was waxing ecstatic about the Beehive Hut asked. "DO? My God, man, I would sit. I would look out the door. I would smell the sea. I would walk and poke around and think."
Who would not want to hole up in there with a teapot, a breviary, and a pile of poetry?
So I have got Robert Flaherty's Man of Aran in my netflix queue and An Aran Keening by Andrew McNeil lie on my bed side table and I probably won't get there this year but I have "planted a seed." I've been to Europe twice, both times during "los años oscuros" (the drinking years), so to go sober, and also to see a place, that from the pictures, looks so much like the coast of New Hampshire, where I grew up, and to visit the country from which my paternal grand parents emigrated, and to go to Mass in some little stone church would be a special kind of pilgrimage.
Reminds me of something I copied into my journal more than a decade ago: “I wish, O son of the living God, O ancient, eternal King, / For a hidden little hut in the wilderness that it may be my dwelling.” – hermit from 600 AD Ireland