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The NDN Silver Blog

Today, the outside world will mark Memorial Day. Most will celebrate it, with only a passing thought, if any, to its original significance. For those who have survived actual military service (or who have lost loved ones to it), it will be less celebration than solemn remembrance. It’s a day that will be marked here, […]

In the outside world, this holiday weekend has long marked the informal beginning of the summer season, even though the official marker remains more than three weeks away. Our own weekend here has been beautiful thus far, all clear skies and bright sunlight. This day, however, began below the freezing mark, and while the sun is now fully […]

I had begun this weekend intending to feature a pair of works from existing inventory: pieces that evoked flow of the waters and the feel of moonlight rain, among Wings’s more recent works, to be sure, but not precisely new. But this morning, as he wrapped up work on a couple of commissions, he also completed a couple […]

Finally, after so many, many weeks of winter clinging insistently to the land, it finally feels like May. For much of the outside world, it’s perfect timing: the Friday heading into a three-day holiday weekend, one originally intended to pay tribute to fallen warriors now transmogrified into three days of eating, drinking, and shopping. Because […]

In our way, symbols can, and often do, have many different meanings. Oh, they vary from nation to nation and culture to culture, of course, but it’s more than that: For example, feathers can be used to represent prayer, or power (and sometimes the two are inextricable, synonymous, or both). In a similar vein, the same symbol that […]

Yesterday, we were privileged to stop alongside one of this land’s great watersheds and bear witness to its journey: the roiling, racing, tumbling path of the waters of the Rio Grande. It was a near-flawless day, the sky overhead a perfect shade of turquoise, the waters less blue than silver beneath the touch of the […]

Today, we will travel along the Rio Grande, the primary watershed of this larger area. It is a long, winding journey, one that wends its way through cliff and canyon, adorned with sage and chamisa, a path traveled beneath a vaulted sky. Here at Red Willow, here are more immediate waters, of course: Blue Lake, […]

I walked outside at dawn to be confronted with a world gone silvery-white. It looked like fog, an embracing shroud between us and all sight of the peaks . . . and then I remembered: There is a forest fire not far west of here, and the smoke first made its presence known to us […]

Today finally dawned clear and warm, at least in relative terms: in the twenties, but climbing fast; a breeze, not a wind; the only clouds in sight small strands of white cotton. The brown soil is warm, its blanket green and bright. On a day like this, it’s possible to believe in the comfortable fiction […]

Twenty-seven degrees, and the world outside the window is frozen. It is the twentieth of May, and yet winter is here: The dark earth, so long blanketed with green, is rimed with frost, the blades of grass beneath my feet crunchy and white. It looks just like the stone in today’s featured work, a work […]

Some days, the world reminds us that reliance on human constructs is a fool’s errand, even with something so simple as the calendar. On Monday, the air was warm and the skies sunny; despite the wind, it was a beautiful day, wholly spring. Yesterday, it snowed early, then simple grew cold and blustery. Today? We began […]

It snowed this morning. Not for long, and not much gathered upon the surface of the ground, but what fell from the sky was unquestionably snow. May 18th, past the half-way point of the last full month of spring, and winter returns. This is not, as it happens, the latest that we have seen snow […]

The water came yesterday: a trickle early in the morning that by dawn barely covered the bottom of the pond, a more rapid flow later in the day that had filled it by dusk. On this morning, it had already overflowed the banks. The water is especially welcome this year, given how sporadic our actual […]

It is the planting season here at Red Willow — not only for us, but for Mother Earth herself. Many of her children provide for the existence of their own children, whole future generations, in ways that we have not learned how to manage. Procreation is, at least at the collective level of our species, […]

It is the season, or so the old saying goes, to turn one’s thoughts to love. Here, it turns our thoughts to labor. Spring is, for us, the busiest season. Winter may be more difficult, tasks made more laborious by bitter cold and deep snow and crammed into shorter periods of light; summer and fall […]

In spring in this place, all of the elements come together to create life, an alchemy as old as time itself. The forecast predicts wind today, that artifact and arbiter of this season in this place. In most years, the wind is spring’s defining characteristic, air as exponent, the element in extremis that serves as breath […]

This day brought with it the gift of another clear dawn, a sunrise sans cloud cover or indeed much color — it was, rather, almost pure light. In this place, clouds and dust and even the smoke of distant wildfires turn the light into something that goes far beyond magic into the visionary realms of […]

After so many cold, gray days, today finally held out the promise of summer. It was a tenuous and slender thread of hope, to be sure: There is still substantial snow upon the peaks, the nights continue to hit the freezing mark, and there will be more cold weather between now and the Solstice. But for […]

There was no sunrise again today. We awakened to a dawn shrouded in cold gray fog, so dense that it was impossible to see the peaks, much less the light behind them. The forecast had predicted sun, and after so many days of winter’s unexpected return, it was sobering to find that our world had […]

In some old stories, Father Sun begins each day as a child born anew, growing as he journeys across the sky, thence descending as an old man, an elder among elders, to his final rest at night. In a way, we are such children, too: given the great gift of each new day and the […]

There was no sunrise this morning. In a sense, that’s not remotely true, of course: The sun itself most certainly rose. But our father remained wholly invisible to us until he had climbed high into the post-dawn sky, beginning his day hidden behind a veil of gray and lowering clouds. In any season, that is unusual […]

Dawn and dusk here are molten moments, Mother Earth transformed suddenly into precious metal annealed by Father Sun’s own flame. This was a recent photo, one of Wings’s casual shots, snapped at sunset one afternoon mere weeks ago when spring was still more hope than promise, irrespective of the date on the calendar. Today, the […]

We have, if the weather experts are to be believed, several days of clouds and rain ahead of us. Already, the weather cycle has switched to a monsoonal pattern, despite the fact that such storms are not due for many weeks yet. But it makes for skies that are spectacularly beautiful, and days that are […]

Two weeks ago, we traveled down to Santa Fe. We took the usual route, one that winds through the long canyon south of Taos along the Quartzite, a tributary of the Rio Grande that meets up and merges with it as the great river cuts a wide and swashbuckling path through the Gorge that bears […]

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