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Waking up by the Grand Canyon River

It is morning on the river and the canyon is a reminder of the ever-changing nature of our world. Piles of rock, millions, even billions of years old stand tall, proud, resilient to many forces but also crumble under foot and get washed away in floods, making new formations, new canyons.

The conch is sounded and the new tribe of river adventurers begin to rouse and gather their sandy things.

The sand is everywhere and I’m glad for it. I hope it takes a long time for this ancient canyon dust to come out of my clothes, my books, and my skin.

After breakfast, there is a reading and a river talk. I did not expect our crew to be scientists, historians, plant experts, interpreters. It makes me relieved to know there are people who love and know this place so well and inspire others to tap those values that are deep in all of us yet easy to ignore.

Generosity runs deep in this canyon. Our group shares sun screen, lip balm, stories, smiles, and an openness to connect.

The boats are finally loaded, life jackets buckled, and we push off from shore. Leaving the comfort of camp but for the Colorado, which calls us to keep moving down river. To the inevitable return back to the world of constructs and contradictions.

But this time we will be different. We will hold the space and emptiness, the magnificence and sheer joy of this place with us.

The Grand Canyon carves a path through the soul if you let it. It reminds us that we are soil and dust and air and pollen. And that even as the world warms, it is still full of wonder and unsolved mysteries that remain as fruit for the beautiful future.

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