Growing up in Chicago, I had to discover my own mountains. I could choose from skyscrapers or clouds. Tall buildings were okay, and I still love them, especially with the world-class architecture that’s downtown Chicago. But high-rises always look the same, no matter what day you ride up the elevator. Clouds are different. They change from moment-to-moment. They cook lightning in their ovens and trumpet thunder. They churn out snow and let fall the rains. Clouds pose for the sun’s brush. In the Midwest, the thunderheads tower thousands of feet higher than the highest mountain on earth.
I’ve lived in the Southwest for a while now. Lately, during the monsoons, the clouds out here have rivaled anything I ever witnessed in the humid flatlands.
The picture above shows a towering nimbus that dwarfs the La Plata Mountains just below them. And that’s no mean feat, since the La Platas themselves top out at almost 14,000 feet.
We think of mountains as sturdy and permanent, and the clouds which rain down on them as ephemeral. But it’s water that wears mountains to dust. Those majestic shapeshifters – here now, gone in the next moment – end up as the final sculptors of the bold rock which dares jut its claws into the roiling sky.
Mountains say No. Water says Yes. Rock clenches its fist. Clouds open. Rock resists. Clouds cry. Stone is unyielding. Water yields to any rock, takes the shape of its container.
No is strong., but Yes is powerful. To be closed is determined, yet to be open is relentless.
Clouds remind me of the power of the moment, and its sister, change. I’ll leave you with this shot, since the storm can reveal its power much better than I ever could:
© 2022 by Michael C. Just
You can purchase the book through this website. Or go straight to amazon at https://www.amazon.com/s?k=the+dirt+journey+of+a+mystic+cowboy&crid=1S40Q4BXSUWJ6&sprefix=the+dirt%3A+journey+of+a+m%2Caps%2C180&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_23
Mike’s other titles, including The Crippy, The Mind Altar, and Canyon Calls, are available through this website or through Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B002
Four of his short stories have recently been published online:
Lies, Ltd. has been published by The Mystery Tribune @ Lies, Ltd.: Literary Short Fiction by Michael C. Just (mysterytribune.com)
The Obligate Carnivore has been published by the Scarlet Leaf Review @ Category: MICHAEL JUST – SCARLET LEAF REVIEW
I See You, Too has been published by the 96th of October @ I See You, Too – 96th of October
Offload, a short story about a man who can heal any disease, is now live and can be read at The Worlds Within at Offload – The Worlds Within