Saturday, June 30, 2007


The map pic from yesterday seemed to show that the Mariposa Battalion made their "2nd" camp in the backyard. And I thought to search "yosemite creek" in those old writings of the adventure, and found a wonder, the Indian villages of the Valley, which many sites have posted. Well, here's one more. Koominee seems the closest to the backyard. (Betten known as Camp 4, the walk in camp and general gathering place of the climbers).Pic is drawing by Gurgenson. These teepee things may actually be an innovation that came late, likely after contact with whites.

I know these places, having been here awhile, and have often thought taking the bus out and into the valley, that there's a regular succession, procession??, of distinct parts of the Valley, each overshadowed by it's own landmark like El Cap or Sentinal. It's like a song, or orchestra piece with different movements. And there are two distinct sides, one often in shade, the south, "little siberia" beneath Glacier Point and the other, sunny, "sunnyside"-Coyote and Grizzly Bear.
Unfortunatly, it's hard to veryify this account.

Go to a site and read these old accounts!!

It seems Galen Clark may have had a cabin in the backyard, but haven't found it.


In enumerating the village and camp sites of Yosemite Valley the Indians begin at the upper (or east) end of the north side—the grizzly-bear side—and proceed westerly to Til-til'-ken-ny at the lower end of the valley, and then cross the Merced to the south side—the coyote side—and return easterly to the upper end.
Following this sequence, the names and locations of the villages and camps are as follows:
1. Hoo-ké-hahtch'-ke.—Situated at the extreme upper end of the valley between Merced River and Tenaya Creek, and just below the mouth of Tenaya Cañon. A summer village inhabited up to about twenty years ago.
2. Hol'-low', or Lah'-koó-hah.—Indian cave, immediately under Washington Column at the mouth of Tenaya Cañon; a low, broad, and deep recess under a huge rock. Said to have been occupied as a winter shelter, and also when attacked by the Mono Lake Piutes. The overhanging rock is black from the smoke of ages, and far back in the cave large quantities of acorn-shells have been found. The word Lah-koó-hah, often applied to Indian Cave, is a call meaning "come out."
3. Wis'-kah-lah.—A large summer camp on a northward bend of Merced River, a little west of Royal Arches. Western part of site now occupied by a small settlement known as Kinneyville.
4. Yó-watch-ke (sometimes nicknamed Mah-chá-to, meaning "edge" or "border," because of its position on the border of the valley).—Large village at mouth of Indian Cañon; still occupied. The slightly sloping gravel and sand "fan" on which this village is situated is the warmest place in Yosemite Valley, having a southwesterly exposure and receiving a maximum of midday and afternoon sunshine. Several species of shrubs belonging to the Upper Sonoran zone—the one next below the Transition zone, in which Yosemite Valley lies—thrive on this hot sandy plain among and outside of the scattered ponderosa pines and black oaks. These are Ceanothus divaricatus, Rhus trilobata, Lupinus ornatus, Eriodictyon glutinosum, Pentstemon[sic] breviflorus.
5. Ah-wah'-ne.—Village on Black Oak Flat, extending from site of Galen Clark’s grave easterly nearly to Yó-watch-ke. As in the case of most of the villages, the village name was applied also to a definite tract of land belonging to it. This area, in the case of Ah-wah'-ne, was a piece of level ground of considerable size, beginning on the west along a north and south line passing through Sentinel Hotel and reaching easterly nearly to the mouth of Indian Cañon. The cemetery was on this tract, as was also the barn formerly belonging to J. B. Cooke. This being the largest tract of open level ground in the valley, the name Ah-wah'-ne came to be applied by outside Indians to the whole valley.
6. Koom-i-ne, or Kom-i-ne.—The largest and most important village in the valley, situated on the north side of the delta of Yosemite Creek just below Yosemite Fall (Ah-wah'-ning chú-luk-ah-hu, slurred to Chó-luk), and extending southwesterly at the base of the talus-slope under the towering cliffs for about three-quarters of a mile, reaching almost or quite to Three Brothers (Haw'-hawk). Old Chief Tenaya had a large earth-covered ceremonial-house (hang-e) by a big oak tree in this village. The Government soldiers stationed in the valley took possession of the site and established their camp there in 1907, forcing the Indians out. (Occupied by Indians during all my earlier visits.)
7. Wah-hó-gah.—Small village about half a mile west-southwest of Koom-i-ne, on or near edge of meadow.
8. Soo-sem'-moo-lah.—Village at northwest end of old Folsom bridge (now the ford), less than half a mile south of Rocky Point.
9. Hah-ki-ah.—Large village only a short distance (less than one eighth mile) below Soo-sem'-moo-lah, and likewise south of Three Brothers (Haw'-hawk). A roundhouse, or hang-e, was located here, not far from old Folsom bridge. The three villages, Wah-hó-gah, Soo-Sem'-oo-lah, and Hah-ki-ah, were inhabited up to about twenty years ago.
10. Kotm'-pom-pá-sah, or Pom'-pom-pá-sah.—Small village only a little below Hah-ki-ah, and also south of Three Brothers, or under the talus slope of the cañon immediately west of Three Brothers.
11. Aw'-o-koi-e.—Small village below and slightly east of the tall pine growing in a notch on the broad south face of El Capitan. The native Indian name of the gigantic rock cliff which we call El Capitan is To-tó-kon oo-lah, from To-tó-kon, the Sandhill Crane, a chief of the First People.
12. He-lé-jah (the mountain lion).—Small village under El Capitan a little west of Aw'-o-koi-e.
13. Ha-eng'-ah.—Small village under El Capitan, and only a little west of He-lé-jah.
14. Yu-á-chah.—Still another village under El Capitan, and only a short distance west of Ha-eng'-ah.
15. Hep-hep'-oo-ma.—Village where present Big Oak Flat road forks to leave the main road, south of the steep cañon which forms the west wall of El Capitan, and near west end of the big El Capitan Meadows (To-tó-kon oó-lah' i-e-hu). The five villages, Aw'-o-koi-e, He-lé-jah, Ha-eng'-ah, Yu-á-chah, and Hep-hep'-oo-ma, were summer villages occupied from April to late October or early November.
16. Ti-e-té-mah.—Village only a short distance below Hep-hep'-oo-ma, and close to El Capitan bridge.
17. Ho-kó-nah.—Small village a little below Ti-e-té-mah, and near site of old (shack) house.
18. Wé-tum-taw.—Village by a small meadow a short distance. below Ho-kó-nah, and east of Black Spring.
19. Poot-poo-toon, or Put-put-toon.—Village in rocky place on north side of present road at Black Spring, from which it takes its name.
20. Ah-wah'-mah.—Lowermost (westernmost) village in Yosemite Valley, a short distance below Black Spring and above Til-til'-ken-ny, where the mail-carrier’s cabin is located.
21. Sap-pah'-sam-mah.—Lowermost (most westerly) village or camp on south side of the valley, about half a mile east of Pohono Meadows.
22. Lem-mé-hitch'-ke.—Small village or camp on east side of Pohono (or Bridal Veil) Creek, just below a very large rock.
23. Hop'-tó-ne.—Small village or camp at base of westernmost of the lofty cliffs known as Cathedral Rocks, and close to south end of El Capitan bridge across Merced River.
24. Wé-sum-meh'.—Small village or camp at base of Cathedral Spires near the river, with a small meadow below; not far above Hop'-tó-ne.
25. Kis'-se, or Kis'-se-uh.—Large village near the river, nearly opposite Hah-ki-ah. Kis'-se was the westernmost of the large villages on the south side. From it easterly they occurred at frequent intervals.
26. Chá-chá-kal-lah.—Large village just below old Folsom bridge (ford). Formerly a sweat-house (chap-poó) here.
27. Ham'-moo-ah.—Village on Ford road, nearly opposite Three Brothers (Wah-hah'-kah).
28. Loi-ah.—Large village in open pine forest below Sentinel Rock (on ground now occupied by Camp Ahwahnee) and reaching down toward river. Occupied during my earlier visits-to the valley.
29. Hoó-koo-mé-ko-tah.—Village a little above Galen Clark’s house; looked out easterly over big meadow. Occupied during my earlier visits. (Hoo-koo-me is the great horned owl.)
30. Haw-kaw-koó-e-tah (Ho-kok'-kwe-lah, Haw-kaw'-koi*).—Large and important village on Merced River, where Sentinel Hotel and cottages now stand. Home of the band called Yo-ham'-i-te (or Yo-hem'-i-te), for whom the valley was named. The old woman Callipena was a Yo-ham'-i-te.
[*Named from How-kaw'-met-te, or How-wah-met-te, a rocky place.]
31. Ho-low.—Village on or near Merced River where the schoolhouse used to stand.
32. Wah'-tahk'-itch-ke.—Village on edge of meadow on south bend of Merced River near forks of road west of Le Conte Memorial. The wild pea (wah-tah'-kah) grows here.
33. Too-yú-yú-yu.—Large village on south bend of Merced River due. north of Le Conte Memorial and close to the bridge between Le Conte Memorial (or Camp Curry) and Kinneyville.
34. Too-lah'-kah'-twh.—Village or camp on open ground now occupied by orchard on east side of meadow north of Camp Curry.
35. Um'-ma-taw.—Large village on present wagon-road between Camp Curry and Happy Isles; was some distance from the river; water was fetched from a spring.
36. Ap'-poo-meh.—Camp on Merced River below Vernal Fall.
37. Kah-win'-na-bah'.—Large summer camp in Little Yosemite, whose name it bears.
Indian Village and Camp Sites in Yosemite Valley*
[Editor’s note: This information is historical. Select this link for current Yosemite campgrounds.]
By C. Hart Merriam [Clinton Hart Merriam, 1855 - 1942]
[Sierra Club Bulletin 10(2) (January 1917), pp. 202-209.]



Tree in the Door

June 30, 2007

Thursday, June 28, 2007


Dr. Who on when I came home. Saved the world again. Next on was documentary about Pizzarro and the Incas. Real CSI forensic stuff.

All about gold.

It was gold here too when the Mariposa Battalion came to the Valley.

I bought a plastic gold pan to put water in when painting watercolors.
Map reference:

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The Injured

It's a blurry pic but I've thought how to make it a painting....the hawk surrounded with very detailed oak leaves.

From yesterday on the bus I remember the young girl who got on who was missing most of one arm, and her skin had a mottled discoloration. The fellow next to me sneezed and she turned about and smiled sweetly saying, Gesundheit.

I forget injuries after I know someone, but at first my attention is riveted.

A co workers hat was off, it's hot, and I could see the operation scars where they worked on his skull.

Letterman is useless...will Ferguson have Paris jokes?? Yep, a skit about not mentioning Paris. Well, I'm sure the injured watch too, and laugh to make a phantom limb stop hurting.

Tree in the Door
June 27, 2007

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

High Noon and Spider Man 3

At the end of High Noon, when Gary Cooper is walking with hesitation the empty streets...the deserted town has an atmosphere to it. I'm not sure what to compare it to (comparison is how things get expressed!), and saw some Edward Hopper paintings in the current Smithsonian magazine, and thought maybe that was it...the harsh light and empty buildings, and solitary, isolated people.

I thought of that riding the bus to Merced. I thought to look at cars, and hopped off the bus at Amtrak having spotted a couple with for sale signs. I looked them over but they were too expensive, and besides, I dont want a car. That's been my mantra of late: I dont want a car. Anyway, I walked into the old part of town and the theater was showing Spider Man 3. The theaters themsevles are as small as the old Gem, the difference being there is a whole bunch of them in a complex.

Now, at the end of Spider Man 3, Spidy needs help just like Gary Cooper in High Noon. And the villains threaten the hero's girl. A fun movie, and I suppose Grandmother's brought the Grandkids to see it, now as then.

And of course the villains are apocalyptic villains. A sand man made by a particle experiment, and some kinda alien thing arriving on a meteor.

Spidy kept his badge.

Came home with a flat screen lcd TV, and mini DVD TV, and a MP3 player. I can get more space, replace my broken mp3, get rid of the giant tube TV I inherited from previous roomys, and now be able to watch TV on the little one when they sleep, which they do a lot!

"Oh, your room hasn't changed much...but then there's not much you can do."
Spider Man's Aunt (?)

Pedaled to Curry for a late Pizza, and back in the dark with the headlamp...sometimes the lamp picks up the reflections of wildlife's eyes...deer, bear, raccoon...just owls screeching by the Lower Falls tonight.

(I'll get more craftsmanlike as this goes along, I guess...Google's spellchecker is very cool, much better than Word).

Tree in the Door

Monday, June 25, 2007

American Memory

The American Memory site at the Library of Congress was one of the first things I found in 2000 or so. Time to time I visit it, and I guess it's gotten bigger, though the things I look for like the Yangtze Patrol haven't changed. I found drawings and old photos of all the old bridges in the Valley. And here is another view of the backyard. Took me awhile to snag it as Quicktime kept butting in!! Anyway, this drawing dates I believe to the 1920s, though made more recently. All those little dots are buildings gone with the flood of '97. The dots right under the word Bridge is the Superintendent's House (photos of this at site too), which is really cool, but boarded up. I walked both sides of the creek today, and then along the Merced to Curry for dinner, then back passed the Awahanee Meadow, where I saw a nesting hawk (they like the Royal Arches area, where rock climbers because of them are made to stay away.) And I saw a bear tearing apart an old log by Le Conte Memorial. So, quite a walk!!

American Memory...then search: Yosemite

Tree in the Door
June 25, 2007

Sunday, June 24, 2007


Late last night the first movie I ever saw in a theater was on, "High Noon".

Finding Nemo reminded me of the second I saw, which was 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

And the third, a double bill with Under the Sea was a documentary by Jaques Costeau. I remember the Academy Award on TV when both won awards.

I must have seen another film with High Noon.

Some other early films I saw at the Gem, a real deal small town theater. Battle Cry. Ten Commandments. Run of the Arrow. Forbidden Planet. War of the Worlds. Cal Tiki. The Monster that Challenged the Word. I Was a Teenage Werewolf. The Blob. The Giant Claw. Something Miles to Earth (a dinosaur in the Roman Coliseum). The Giant Crab. Journey to the Center of the Earth. The Amazing Colossal Man. The Time Machine. Ben Hur. The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad. The Black Rose. King Arthur and His Knights. Francis in the Army.

I'll have to add some more as I recall them.

There was one I saw about an old merchant ship...letmegetthat one...well, I cant find it, it starred Yul Brynner and Orsen Wells. I saw it for the first time since a child on PBS a few months back. It has some remarkable scenes in it, including one of Yul's trade mark rant and raves. (Morituri, with Marlon Brando, not Wells...a curio: Brynner died within an hour of Wells!)

I looked up Memory on wikipedia tonight to try and get a take, and was disappointed it didn't have anything on the memory of places, like hiking trails!, or memory of movies.

I remember these movies, and often think of them, and of course seen them repeatedly. I've watched TV and gone to movies constantly, so I have the usual storehouse.

I might spend some time here in the blog ruminating on them...needles to say the early fifty films were heavily laden with cold war fears.

Today I thought about the Imagineers Nemo Nautilus, and how organic it looks, even a bit of a take on the giant squid (the two observation ports like giant squid eyes!), and how Ned Land when he fights the squid is fighting Nemo's alter manifestation, cant think of the name and I had it!...and where did I see this too...the Forbidden Planet, the invisible monster from the id of Walter Pidgeon. They keep playing of late Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. sheesh!

Oh, in one about Perseus, the Kraken is the fair damsel's (Andromeda), what's it called!! somesortof manifestation. *
Cool, film of a Moray Eel fighting an Octopus, in a nature doc on Octopi!!
This after the Tube Worms and undersea vents again!!
*Well, I was able to find what I was thinking of here...emanation was the word and search emanation andromeda graves greek took me to it...a quote of Grave's Greek Myths. He has these remarkable, and gifted I think, explanation of the iconograpy sources of the myths.
Andromeda's story has probably been deduced from a Palestinian icon of the Sun-god Marduk, or his predecessor Bel, mounted on his white horse and killing the sea-mosnter Tiamat. This myth also formed part of Hebrew mythology: Isaiah mentions that Jehovah (Marduk) hacked Rahab in pieces with a sword (Isaiah li, 9); and according to Job x. 13 and xxvi. 12, rahab was the Sea. In the same icon, the jewewlled naked Andromeda, standing chained to a rock, is Aphrodite, or Ishtar, or Astarte, the lecherous Sea-goddess, 'ruler of men'. But she is not waiting to be rescued; Marduk has bound her there himself, after killing her emanation, Tiamat the sea-serpent, to prvent further mischief. In the Babylonian Creation Epic, it was she who sent the Flood. Astarte, as Sea-goddess, had temples all along the Palestinian coast, and at Troy she was Hesione, 'Queen of Asia', whom Heracles is said to have rescued from another sea-monter.
I've thought to google up every name in Graves'(Robert Graves, Greek Myths). I love the old names.


Mobile in a Mobile environment

Mobilis n Mobili

Tree in the Door

June 24, 2007

Saturday, June 23, 2007


TECHNOCALYPS: The fusion of utopian dreams and apocalyptic fears of the millennium [Michael Grosso]

Well, I’m not the only one to ponder these grim musings, as I wouldn’t be able to so easily fill them out with web bits, and the one for today was Dead Hand.

From wikipedia…


Dead Hand (aka perimetr[1]) was a Cold War era nuclear control system used by the USSR.[2] It is an example of fail-deadly deterrance, whereby an overwhelming response is automatically triggered if the USSR's leadership were to be killed in a decapitation strike.


Related is the Dead Man Switch, often found on trains. The engineer has to keep a positive pressure on the control, and if he lets go, the engine shuts down. I used to operate stand up forklifts that were like this. The forklift moved when you pressed down on the power pedal, and as soon as you stepped off, it stopped immediately. It was a remarkable tool to operate in the narrow three tiered storage aisles plucking pallets heavy with…souvenirs… This was at the Magic Kingdom’s warehouse, where I worked one summer, and then some. If by mischance I fell off the forklift it would stop on it’s own.

“On it’s own” is kinda the key to all this.

I see a relation with the Dead Hand and the Singularity. Here’s a description of the Singularity from somewhere (one can find sources easy…just google a distinctive phrase).


The Technological Singularity is the hypothesized creation, usually via AI or brain-computer interfaces, of smarter-than-human entities who rapidly accelerate technological progress beyond the capability of human beings to participate meaningfully in said progress.

A long time ago I tried to explain all this by comparing it to something chemistry student’s study…a super saturated solution, or even the boiling of water. Dissolving a solid in liquid has a limit, and when the saturation point is reached the solid precipitates to the bottom. Solids can be made to precipatate with temp changes, or adding another chemical. Water heats up until it reaches it’s boiling point, and then there’s all those bubbles.

Global Warming, it’s thought, may progress in a hidden fashion, the ocean absorbing more and more heat, and then reach a point where a “cascade” of events happen. Boiling bubbles in water is a cascade, as is the solid that percipitates out of solution. Letmego find cascade…

Cascade chemistry

"Cascade reactions, also known as domino reactions, are multibond-forming processes in which the first reaction creates the functionality/geometry necessary for the second reaction to proceed, and so on.

Falling dominos. I think that’s been use by the politicians for their metaphors!!

A movie quote:

. . .across the count of time. . .

. . .down the long haul,
into history back.

I sees the end what were the start.

It's Pox-Eclipse, full of pain!

And out of it were birthed
crackling dust and fearsome time.

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome


Coming home Finding Nemo was on, the only movie that can make me laugh at the travails of memory loss.

A movie quote:

"Swim Down"

Finding Nemo

Now Alias is on...

Tree in the Door
June 23, 2007

Friday, June 22, 2007


Man vs Wild on when I got off work. I watch all these, this one while eating watermellon, (preferable to sheep eyeball). Then Deadliest Catch. I get seasick easy!

Souvenir is French word for memory. Actually "memory" is derived from French .

It's all about Souvenirs.

It's all about Memories.

I tried to think up a post from this...I cant even think of a pic!!

I was up too late and too sleepy all day.

Well, I'll put up the pic of the "backyard" which has been carefully planned out. I've studied this before, but didn't notice that the tree circle drawings are of the real trees!
Number 4 is Tree in the Door. It's color indicated "demolition".
This pic should probably be over in Flora and Fauna. I'll put a grid on it, then I can locate the pics.
Surrounded by sourvenir hunters I am!!
Well, now there's an infomercial on for oldies but goodies rock and roll songs...and I did an ekphrasis poem on one of those a long time ago. My old poems aren't with was good, and I'll have to retrieve it if it hasn't got tossed. I hear these old songs at work too, and a lamenting thought that the future, while it will have them, wont have what it was like to hear them and the artists in their time.
But the future will have it's own time.
A rookie on the crab boat gets a jacket if he survives his first outing.
Tree in the Door
June 22, 2007

Thursday, June 21, 2007


Well, I missed the solstice...usually I get out at Sunrise and take some pics. Across the creek onetime were a gaggle of photogs focused on Half Dome...from Glacier Point it is spectacular.

I thought to illustrate the post with a pic of Stonehenge...Turner's is okay, but Blake has one in his Prophetic Book Jerusalem. I cant say I've swum even a stroke in his prophetic books!! But I snagged a pic, after much looking!!.

Now, Blake thought Stonehenge was Jerusalem related, and some think it is Troy related, and to my delight I find again another thought I had is not new...the thought being that Troy and Jerusalem are related.

Blake's poem Jerusalem..


And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England’s mountains green?
And was the holy lamb of God
On England’s pleasant pastures seen?
And did the Countenance Divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among these dark Satanic Mills?
Bring me my Bow of burning gold;
Bring me my Arrows of Desire;
Bring me my Spear; O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of Fire!
I will not cease from Mental Fight
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem In England’s green and pleasant Land.

Tree in the Door
June 21, 2007

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Battle Blog

I thought today at work to do a post called Battle Blog. I was looking at a friend's Valley blog last nite and realized that mine just is not as sweet. I don't think anyone would want their ads stuck to mine insomuch as I, well, sorta rant.

I was trying to think what poets would have "Battle Blogs"...

Wait, I googled Battle Blog and it's a trademarked domain name for a little computer application that works very much like the way Google's does here. How it got called Battle Blog I couldn't find yet..

(found: quote

David E. Pinero

Battle Blog

Battle Blog started out to be what Digg actually became. During the Summer of 2003 I became intrigued by the idea of content posted at a blog that readers could vote up or down based on their appreciation of the individual blog posts. My idea at the time was that a blogger - or rather a community of bloggers, would all post essays or blog entries to have them unmercifully rated in this promotion/demotion process. In the end the best essay would be at the top of the presentation while the worst ones would list at the bottom. The absolute worst would be voted right off the presentation (I came to call this occurrence the act of battle blasting content). The name, Battle Blog, reflected the battle that resulted in people voting blog content up while others who disagreed with it voted the same content down. Hence, Battle Blog.


William Blake could do a Battle Blog (not in the program sense!!). Stuff from his Songs of Experience I'm thinking of...letmegetone...

London by William Blake

I wander through each chartered* street,
Near where the chartered Thames does flow,
And mark in every face I meet,
Marks of weakness, marks of woe.
In every cry of every man, In every infant's cry of fear,
In every voice, in every ban,
The mind-forged manacles I hear:
How the chimney-sweeper's cry
Every blackening church appals,
And the hapless soldier's sigh
Runs in blood down palace-walls.
But most, through midnight streets
I hear How the youthful harlot's curse
Blasts the new-born infant's tear,
And blights with plagues the marriage-hearse.

That kindof battle in words I had in mind when I thought up Battle Blog. I'll have to give this more thought...Chimney sweeps didn't live long.

Wikipedia has a bit on the Victorian England it became a scandal the treatment of kids employed as sweeps, and changes were made to improve the safety of the job. Reminds me of the lace makers in Old Shanghai...

Chartered now means something like a chartered airplane. In Blake's time it meant the street, the river, were owned by a wealthy person, probably I'm thinking "chartered" by the King or Nobility.

Poems often take off from the very first lines...I think I said as much before with regard to Souvenir.

Tree in the Door
June 20, 2007

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Cables

Friday I talked with a couple on their way in the morning to Happy Isles and a trek to Half Dome. At first I thought they were maybe not familiar with the hike's requirements, I assume everyone who hasn't done it doesn't know the importance of water food good shoes flashlight warm clothing and being in physical shape to do it. The last tends to sort itself out as anyone who can make the eight mile up hike to the top of the switchbacks probably has it in them to make the cables. I learned the couple had been up and down nearly all the mountains in Scotland, but the last question they asked me was "Is it dangerous?" And I said with a smile and shake of the head, "Not really."

Well, it is, as your safety depends entirely throughout the hike, and certainly on the cable climb, on your own strength and good sense. There's no safety "thing" on the cables, or as one of my friends says, "It's not a amusement ride." There's no bar that's going to hold you in like on a rollercoaster.

People for a long time have been going up the cables without misshap by the thousands for years, well, actually the SF Chronicle today says that, or that they have been minimal, until this year when three have fallen, the last just this last Saturday (a grim day as a brown bear killed a kid in Idaho...first time that has happened there.)

So the park service is rethinking the cables safety. Safety in the park comes under the rubric of "wilderness". In other words, you are on your own.

Is hiking and climbing and swimming and all the rest dangerous?? Not really.
Other people falling does give one pause when starting out, but on Memorial Day, the day of the pic, I cant remember giving it much thought once I got going.
Once on the cables, however, just dont look down, you'll hold up the line!


Tree in the Door

June 19, 2007

Monday, June 18, 2007


Salvation for the survivors in Gericault's painting is the small sail on the distant horizon.

The Raft of Medusa by Théodore Géricault

The painting was made about a newstory of the time, the first time a formal painting like this in it's classical composition was used to portray a current event--an ekphrasis!


Tree in the Door

June 18, 2007

Mirres vous u

I got John Skelton's poem here:

Pic is by Gericault

Upon a dead man's head that was sent to him from an honorable gentlewoman for a token, devised this ghostly meditation in English covenable, in sentence commendable, lamentable, lachrymable, profitable for the soul.

YOUR ugly token
My mind hath broken
From worldly lust;
For I have discussed
We are but dust,
And die we must.
It is general
To be mortal: I have well espied
No man may him hide
From Death hollow-eyed
With sinews witherèd,
With bonès shatterèd,
With his worm-eaten maw,
And his ghastly jaw
Gasping aside,
Naked of hide,
Neither flesh nor fell.
Then, by my counsel,
Look that ye spell
Well this gospel:
For whereso we dwell
Death will us quell
And with us mell.
For all our pampered paunches,
There may no fraunchis,
Nor worldly bliss ,
Redeem us from this:
Our days be dated
To be checkmated
With draughtès of death,
Stopping our breath;
Our eyen sinking,
Our bodies stinking,
Our gummès grinning,
Our soulès brinning.
To whom, then, shall we sue,
For to have rescue,
But to sweet Jesu,
On us then for to rue?
O goodly Child Of Mary mild,
Then be our shield !
That we be not exiled
To the dyne dale
Of bottomless bale,
Nor to the lake Of fiendès blake.
But grant us grace
To see thy face,
And to purchase
Thine heavenly place,
And thy palace,
Full of solace,
Above the sky,
That is so high;
Eternally To behold and see The Trinity!

Mirres vous y.*
* Mirres vous y. Fr. trans. "See yourself therein",i.e. recognize your own mortality at seeing this dead man's head. —AJ
Skelton is kindaneat. And this one always has struck me as rock bottom motivation to be Christian, and pray for salvation to "Lord Jesu"
Gericault is kindaneat too...maybe tomorrow The Raft of Medusa...
June 17, 2007
Tree in the Door

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Four Mile Chipmonk

There's a tendancy to take a pic, then the next time that subject shows up to say, Oh, I already have that pic.

Apparently, I cant get enound of the squirrels!! This one from last week's hike.

Tree in the Door
June 16, 2007

Friday, June 15, 2007

Vincent's Bedroom

It looks a bit like something out of Pinocchio.

Because from time to time I have a roommate, one half of my cabin I dont use even when I dont have one.

Time to time I'm told I have too much "clutter".

Tree in the Door is a room I'm sure Vincent would have appreciated!


Tree in the Door

June 15, 2007



Dr. Who was on when I got off work.

I think he and the girl save the earth in every episode!

Then a show I’d seen before about amber fossils.

A still photograph is like “light amber” that captures the image,

Fossil amber from ancient tree resin captures the whole thing.
Found "fossil amber metalmark butterflies" on the web.


Then Charlie Rose with Zibigney…or however it’s spelled…yakityyakity yak about Iraq.
Powel says bring them all home??

I want to hear from the people who study, who look into the amber with a loop.

I’m of the opinion, as the 99 Balloons song goes. “this is war”.
Then Charlie has an art critic on talking all about Van Gough...there's one Vincent did of an artist carrying his french easel...try to find that for tomorrow!
Butterfly pic from wikipedia.
Oh, there was a science fiction story that worked out that amber was like a hologram picture...that when it had solidified there were pictures made in it of the ancient scenes.

Tree in the Door
June 14, 2oo7

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Great Turf

On the TV when I came home tonight was the story of the Israel Arab 1967 war, more detailed than I've seen before.

I was thinking about The Great Turf today, the famous watercolor by Durer. He did a hare too, and for my watercolor class I thought to paint the Great Turf and put the Hare in the picture. A unique idea? Well, I thought, but in the San Diego museum they hung a picture to replace one loaned to another museum (I'll have to do a post on that picture!) and it was a couple centuries old and it had the hare happily situated in the turf! I didn't finish the painting, I think I still have it. When I have chance! That's my refrain of late!!

Yesterday I was peddeling through Cook's Meadow, and I could hear things moving about in the thick meadow grasses, and tried to see them, and take a pic, and that's what got me thinking about the Great Turf.
Oh, and now a show about the history of the Flowery Flag, that's what they called it in Old China, and they'd fly it on their boats for luck--Old Glory.
Tree in the Door
June 13, 2007

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Earth to the Moon

Here a bit that goes along with the pic...the last moon rocket launch.


In 1865, Jules Verne wrote a science fiction story entitled, "From the Earth to the Moon." The story outlined the author's vision of a cannon in Florida so powerful that it could shoot a "Projectile-Vehicle" carrying three adventurers to the moon. More than 100 years later NASA produced the Saturn V rocket and from a spaceport in Florida, this rocket turned Verne's fiction into fact.
As spotlights play on the rocket and launch pad at dusk, the last moon shot, Apollo 17, is pictured here awaiting its December 1972 night launch.
Image credit: NASA

end quote

And here's some Jules Verne bits about us...


But the point in which the Americans singularly distanced the Europeans was in the science of gunnery. Not, indeed, that their weapons retained a higher degree of perfection than theirs, but that they exhibited unheard-of dimensions, and consequently attained hitherto unheard-of ranges. In point of grazing, plunging, oblique, or enfilading, or point-blankfiring, the English, French, and Prussians have nothing to learn; but their cannon, howitzers, and mortars are mere pocket-pistols compared with the formidable engines of theAmerican artillery.

Now when an American has an idea, he directly seeks a second American to share it. If there be three, they elect a president and two secretaries. Given four, they name a keeper of records,and the office is ready for work; five, they convene a general meeting, and the club is fully constituted.

Shall there never be a fresh opportunity of trying the ranges of projectiles? Shall the air never again be lighted with the glare of our guns? No international difficulty ever arise to enable us to declare war against some transatlantic power? Shall not the French sink one of our steamers, or the English, in defiance of the rights of nations, hang a few of our countrymen?"


Jules Verne


end quotes


Tree in the Door

June 12, 2007

Monday, June 11, 2007

Turtle Island

Turtle Island

I'm partial to tortoises, having had a desert tortoise found crossing the road near a bean field for 40 years. They cant be returned to the desert, they have some kindof contagious sinus condition acquired from city life.

I read Gary Snyder's "Turtle Island" a while ago, and he's a famous Sierra writer. I suppose I could do a review of his poems...but for this post it's just the notion of Turtle Island I'm after. Native Americans came up with the name Turtle Island for their land. Snyder I find tonight extended this to all of North America...I've forgotten what all I read in the book.

America is a fine name and I don't see the point of changing it to get at a different ethos with regard to the environment which is what something called Deep Ecology is about (curiously in JFK lore there is the notion of Deep work we have something called Deep Cleaning!!) Anyway, anyway, here's a Snyder quote:

Snyder himself wrote:
Buddhist teachings go on to say that the true source of compassion and ethical behavior is paradoxically none other than one's own realization of the insubstantial and ephemeral nature of everything. Much of animism and paganism celebrate the actual, in its inevitable pain and death, and offer no utopian hopes. Add to this contemporary ecosystem theory, and environmental history, and you get a sense of what's at work. One recent philosophical outcome is "Deep Ecology" which informs the work of the Wild Lands Project [sic], among others. (Snyder, 1995, Deep Ecology for the 21st Century, Sessions, ed.)

So I looked up Deep Ecology and read Wiki's bit which has the story of the originator, a Norwegian...


The phrase deep ecology was coined by the Norwegian philosopher Arne Næss in 1973,[1] and he helped give it a theoretical foundation.

Now, Arne Naes got his start with a protest...


Næss cited Rachel Carson's 1962 book Silent Spring as being a key influence in his vision of deep ecology. Næss also engaged in direct action. In 1970, together with a large number of demonstrators, he chained himself to rocks in front of Mardalsfossen a waterfall in a Norwegian fjord and refused to descend until plans to build a dam were dropped


I found this waterfall protest charming, and wrote a poem which I posted in "Second Arrow".

All these environmental groups, all of them, are elitists, there's very little grass roots common man in them. Oh sure, everyone is invited to join them, but the general populace has as much chance of genuinely participating as an average journalist does of influencing the editors of network news shows. This to say these groups have their talking heads too, Snyder famously being one.

America is famous for making groups, joining together over special interests...maybe that's where I go next...Jules Verne, From the Earth to the Moon!
Why is Letterman funny??
Well, I signed off with the cabin shaking funny, then it rocked and rolled a bit. Watch the news now...
Ferguson is funny!!
Well, the quake was 9 miles se of Mammoth...I found that google searching the blogs with "earthquake california"...and this is very cool, it took me here:
Thank you! We got your input.
If you answered all the questions under Your experience and Earthquake effects, we can compute an estimated digital intensity based on your answer alone.
Note that the maps are computed using all the responses in your area, which may be different from yours. Also, community intensities are more accurate with a higher number of responses (say, 10 or more.) See the scientific background section for more details on how these maps are made, or the FAQ for questions about the maintainance of this site. If you still have questions, fill out our comment form.
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Cabin across street from Yosemite Lodge
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That's neat.


Tree in the Door

June 11, 2007

Sunday, June 10, 2007

The Lost Boys

Well, Chevy Chase has just punched the moose...Summer Vacation.

Wendy and the Lost Boys of Neverland.
Pic from Gutenberg.

I feel like a lost boy here in the Valley, and there's a regular tribe, lost girls too. We're not kids of course, but there is the sense of being away from family and home. No one can call the Valley home, except for awhile. Families can establish homes for generations. But for the lost here it's valued to be on our own, and be it so humble, saying after work, "I'm going home."

Ah, so I google up 'lost boys' to try and make a post and find myself reading about the Lost Boys and Lost Girls of Sudan. These are children who perished or managed to escape the wars in Sudan. From 1984 to 2oo4 some two million of all ages have perished. Some thousands of the Lost Boys have come to America. The Lost Girls perished or were enslaved.

ALIAS is on with Nora Jones on the soundtrack. Television is the solace of the lost.

a poem

And what of other worlds circling around the far stars?

"Second star to the right and straight on 'til morning..."

Read in a book their inhabitants adventures and travails,

Or for a Sunday afternoon movie crowd of kids,

Distant Neverlands.


Tree in the Door

June 10, 2007

Saturday, June 9, 2007

The Forest of Arden

Well, I come home to find a hammer stuck in the cedar tree in the door--workmen have installed two bunkbeds, four beds!, in the room across the alcove, and came into mine clearing a few things off the empty bed. (New roommate soon, and the room across the alcove is now a "bunkhouse" room. )

I found this frog I was looking for...see Fauna Flora post. And got to googling jeweled frogs from an old recollection in my readings. Some Shakespeare....

Now, my co-mates and brothers in exile,

Hath not old custom made this life more sweet

Than that of painted pomp? Are not these woods

More free from peril than the envious court?

Here feel we but the penalty of Adam,

The seasons' difference, as the icy fang

And churlish chiding of the winter's wind,

Which, when it bites and blows upon my body,

Even till I shrink with cold, I smile and say

'This is no flattery: these are counsellors

That feelingly persuade me what I am.'

Sweet are the uses of adversity,

Which, like the toad, ugly and venomous,

Wears yet a precious jewel in his head;

And this our life exempt from public haunt

Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,

Sermons in stones and good in every thing.

I would not change it.

As You Like It
Act 2 Scene 1

In The Forest of Arden John Collier 1892
Tree in the Door
June 9, 2007


Well, during the walkabout today outback I noticed a lot of plants uprooted, and wondered if the Trash Can Tiki Temple flowers were gone...sure enough, the "immigration" enforcers got 'm. "Illegal aliens" they were...this to say non native to the Valley species of fauna and flora are removed.

On a ranger guided walk once in Sequoia I heard the explanation of "before Columbus", an effort to return the redwood ecosystem to what it was before Columbus came to the Americas. This is an oversimplification, and probably not even accurate, but it's the idea-- that there is an ideal mix of fauna and flora that is beset by foreign species taking root and moving in. A brown squirrel introduced from the east coast is slowly pushing out ground, or greys, I forget, in areas near San Francisco, from their natuaral habitat. That sort of thing.

Watched tonight how candy is made, more robots!, story of Loch Ness monster and other lake monsters, and a show about the history of dogs and people, how the dogs moved from being wild to domestic pets. In India there are still marginally wild dogs, no ones personal pets, but beggars and scavenger that attach to the community--camp followers.

"Dingos have veen interbreeding with dogs introduced by white settelers. The dingo is being hybridized out of existance.....serious conservations methods may be needed."

Singing dogs of New Guiena...

A poem...

The Valley, June 9, 2007

Haven't heard or seen Coyote,
And where are the mosquitoes!!
The Falls are gossamer already,
Their Spring roar gone with the Dogwood flowers.

Tree in the Door
June 9, 2009

Friday, June 8, 2007

There Be Dragons

Here, there be dragons...

a poem

Oh, if only my thoughts could be still
Like the resting dragonfly's wings.

Tree in the Door
June 7, 2007

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


COG is an abbreviation for "continuity of government" , a subject that can be filled out with a google...

There's a slew of Presidential Directives that lay out what will be done in the event of a catastrophe.

There has been very little input into these things from local government, they're pretty much top done things, and under suspicions as ploys to continue government in a different form.

After the Indonesian Tsunami a helicopeter flew over the islands with the protected primitive tribes off the coast of India...the natives shot at the copters with bows and arrows, proving they had survived in fine shape.
Tree in the Door
June 6, 2007

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Carolina Bays

I got to looking up the sun reversing in the sky, the sun stopping in the sky, which brings up a lot, notably "Worlds in Collision", and then reminded of the pygmies, looked them up, and then happened on the Carolina Bays.

Here is the famous commentary on such matters by the ancient Egyptian...


In Plato's Critias, The wise Egyptian priest in talking to Solon, gives a fairly good picture of what has happened in the past; " There have been and will be again, many destructions of mankind arising out of many causes, the greatest have been brought about by the agency of fire (comets) and water (ice age meltdown), and other lesser ones by innumerable other causes (volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunamis)."The declination of bodies moving in the heavens around the earth, and a great conflagration of things upon the earth (comet/asteroid impacts), which recurs after long intervals; at such times those who live upon the mountains and in the dry lofty places are more liable to destruction than those who dwell by the rivers or on the sea shore. When on the other hand, the gods purge the earth with a deluge of water, the survivors will be those who dwell up on the mountains, as the water always having a tendancy to come up from below (Tsunamis and sea level rises)." He also says "that wherever the extremity of winter frost (Ice ages) or of summer sun (climatic change and drought after volcanic eruptions) does not prevent mankind to exist, sometimes in greater, sometimes in lesser numbers." These disasters "leaves only those of you who are destitute of letters and education, and so to begin all over again like children, and know nothing of what happened in ancient times."

end quote

And here's a bit more from the same site which is here:

The Anasazi have a legend that talks of a fiery sky serpent destroying the civilizations on the islands of the Carribean, or more specifically Tulapin (Turtle Island), their homeland. One can imagine an elongate meteor, rotating as it enters the atmosphere, creating a wiggly, snake like trail. The speed at which a meteor enters the atmosphere also gives the visual impression of the speed of a striking snake.

Turtle Islands is cool, maybe I'll go there next post....

Tree in the Door
June 5, 2007

Monday, June 4, 2007


"Nor Atreus his nefarious feast prepare"

Medea and Cadmus I sorta knew, but Atreus I googled up..and found this at the wiki site...


Atreus retook the throne using advice he received from Hermes. Thyestes agreed to give the kingdom back when the sun moved backwards in the sky, a feat that Zeus accomplished. Atreus retook the throne and banished Thyestes.


And the other thing that's caught my eye is the Atreidae, descendents from the Trojans I think.

I've been wondering about the Trojan diaspora after the Fall of Troy...


Pic is a little bird up in Tuolumne.
"nor Progne wing the air"
Progne is alternate spelling of Procne or Prokne, the latter being easier to google!!
Tree in the Door
June 4, 2007

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Cadmus' Dragon

One of the charms of the web is I can find out about the mythical references in poems in an eye blink, where before searching the library was so daunting that I usually just shrugged and tried to gather in the sense of a poem without really knowing the reference.

In Horace's Ars Poetica I quoted the other day, there was this...

Let not Medea, with unnatural rage,
Slaughter her mangled infants on the stage;
Nor Atreus his nefarious feast prepare,
Nor Cadmus roll a snake, nor Progne wing the air;
For while upon such monstrous scenes we gaze,
They shock our faith, our indignation raise.

Next few posts I'm going to go over these references....

It's late...tomorrow Tuolumne for an afternoon...almost like the night before Xmas!!


June 3, 2007

Tree in the Door

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Waterfalls and Dragons

Qu Yuan and the Dragon Boats

I happened upon the story of Qu Yuan because of an art assignment. The assignment was to take two animals and combine them to make a new one. I made a dragon fish, combining a carp’s tail and a dragon’s head. The carp was from Hokusai, and the Dragon was from a roof with a Chinese Imperial Dragon in a photo of Old Shanghai.

The Imperial Dragons look a bit like the Aztec Feathered Dragons. In fact, there’s a book I read that noted the similarities between Chinese, Asian art and the art of the Mayans and Aztecs—pretty convincing of contact between the two.

Qu Yuan lived in a time of wars, and corruption, and to protest the later he walked into a river and took his own life. In reading the tale, I learned about the Dragon Boat Races, and about Chinese Dragons, and carp that ascend waterfalls, all full of symbolism and ritual.

There’s something about Qu Yuan that reminds me of Suibhne’s tale. They’re both remembered for their poetry.

The dragon Cadmus killed was a sacred guardian of a spring. More about that tomorrow…
Tree in the Door
June 2, 2007

Friday, June 1, 2007

Temple of the Trash Can Tikis

The Birdman of Easter Island


Each year leadership of the island was determined by the individual who could scale down the vertical slopes, swim out to one of three small islets in shark-infested waters, and bring back the egg of the nesting sooty tern unbroken. The one who did this successfully was considered the Birdman of the year and was bestowed with special honors and privileges.


Well, the Tern nest was a Holy Grail of sorts I'd say. But Easter Island is a sad tale.

Thinking of birdmen, let me lookup the other one...

quote from wiki

The Teotihuacan influence took the god to the Mayas, who adopted him as Kukulkán. The Maya regarded him as a being who would transport the gods.


That's Quetzalcoatl, the Feathered Serpent.

CuChulain Kukuklan

CuChulain is a famous old Irish hero, of the same era as Suibhne (a name one site has dervived from Scandanavian "sven"), and I've always been curious as to it's similarity to KuKuKlan, the Aztec, Maya, and others, Feathered Serpent.

Web search doesn't connect them.

Birds fly with wings, and Shamans, ancient holy men, don feathered costums. The "flights" they take are in the spiritual realm.

Lots on web.

Of course, the Viking ships had dragon prows.

The Trash Can Tiki's Temple is outback....a sewage pumping system made secure against floods so sewage wont escape into the river. Yosemite Creek is beautiful, it travels from the lower Falls to where it meets the Merced. It's a shame it has no walk path, and a shore line cluttered with industrial facilities. More familiar to Tourists is the other shore where the old park Supervisor's Home still stands, but abandoned since the '97 flood.

Quarrels about just how to go about things predominate the Valley's future...shades of Easter Island.

Tomorrow, Dragons...

Tree in the Door
June 1, 2007