My first thought was how extraordinary it is for me to be able to enjoy this view while others suffer. I am an American Boomer and I often feel this kind of privileged-person guilt. This morning it probably was fueled by watching a movie about World War 11 courage and brutality, ”A Call to Spy,” before bed.

My second thought was about standing by death beds and wondering about death. A boilerplate religious answer about living and lives taken, pain and suffering versus happiness and comfort, came next: We have to know one to know the other. But, for me, that still doesn’t dispel the mystery.

My next thought, after going back to bed and working on sentences in my head, was embarrassment about my habit of trying to ascribe human stories to morning mountains, my growing aversion to metaphor.

I really had no answers. I gave up on silly sentences. Time to move on. Time to walk with Cowboy, iPhone in hand but only the most straightforward words worth the while.

I am thankful for iPhones for sure. I can see this mountain from bed but have to get up and go outside for a clear view. I was drawn this morning by the play of shadow and light on the green mountain flanks. I can record the image in seconds, without words.

Maybe mixed up in my thinking, too, was re-reading an E.B. White essay, “A Slight Sound in Evening,” about Thoreau and Walden.

White wrote there about the purity of Thoreau’s words: ” … all things and events speak without metaphor.” He admired Walden for conveying “religious feeling without religious images.”

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