Escaping to an Artful Landscape

IMG_0875Everyone should have a special place that brings a sense of belonging and rejuvenation,  where you can leave the cares of the world behind and just focus on nature, relaxation and creative pursuits. I just returned from one of my special places, Ghost Ranch Education & Retreat Center in Northern New Mexico where I attended a pit firing workshop.  Being there is like stepping into a Georgia O’keefe painting.  She lived and worked on this very property.

Here I am with a tribe of other creative and like-minded people.   We are hikers, writers,

singers, welders, quilters painters, printmakers, and ceramic artists.  The ideas and energy we share in our individual workshops and at communal mealtimes is infectious.  This is important to me as an artist for I work alone and need an inflow of new inspiration to keep my own creative fires burning.  There is a camaraderie that is quickly built in a brief week here.

IMG_0852The landscape at Ghost Ranch is an inspiration in itself.  Everywhere you look is a work of art. The rock formations, the colors, the contrast between the sage green plants andIMG_0901 the orange-hued landscape is such a stunning contrast from the Pacific Northwest.  Hiking here is a spiritual experience.


I return tired but also energized with new creative energy. Yes, there is an expense involved.  I travel on air miles through my mileage credit card and save all year but the rewards are worth it.  Really, the best investment is in yourself.  There is great value in stepping away into another world.

IMG_0893I Know a Place

Where the bones of the earth

Are laid bare

Rippled muscles of relief

Carved by centuries of thunderstorms

I know a place

Of cool arroyos shaded by cottonwoodsIMG_0917

Ringed by cliffs of sandstone & terracotta

Once the beds of ancient oceans

IMG_0878I know a place

Where sagebrush, pinyon, & juniper dot the landscape

The air filled with their savory fragrance

And the ground peppered by their gray remains

I know a place

Where striped lizards race about the rocks,IMG_0912

Rabbits hide in the brush

And the falcon stalks its prey

Soaring in the sky above

I know a place

Where the spirits of the ancient ones

Float above the mesas

And visions fly out of my head

Like crows going home to roost



5 thoughts on “Escaping to an Artful Landscape

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