on the surface, the meaning of this impression, "devils flower," is easily seen as a play on words rhyming with the location it was created at devils tower national monument in wyoming...but it goes much deeper than just that ...this blog is a bit darker and pessimistic than a few of my past more hopeful and optimistic blogs, and it is a direct reflection of my recent feelings of being touched and tempted deeply by darkness lately in my life, a feeling often equated with the devil in the christian religion...i am trying to find my path through and move forward in my life, and my photographic impressions and written literary expressions are both a huge part of my therapy...a therapy to help me discover my way to exactly where i need to be as the yin and yang in my world continue to battle each other...
and here is another meaningful song with truly meaningful lyrics to give listen...it is new alternative music, a really deeply dark yet rocking tune, by an up and coming band: "monsters" by all time low featuring blackbear ...(just click on any of words in the blue links to listen to the song)...
"why do all the monsters come out at night? why do we sleep when we want to hide? why do i run back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? another day, another headache in this hangover hotel. getting used to the rhythm, yeah, i know this beat too well. tunnel visions got me feeling, like you're the only one i see. but i know what's missing, where i'm swimming in my lonely luxury. i'm wondering, why do all the monsters come out at night? why do we sleep when we want to hide? why do I run back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? why am i a sucker for all your lies? strung out like laundry on every line...why do i come back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? i'm addicted to the way you hurt, the way you contradict me. i swear everything looks worse at night, i think i'm overthinking...i don't care who i might hurt along the way, i'm fuckin' sinking into every word, i don't care if you lying when I'm drinking. so, tell me pretty lies, look me in my face, tell me that you love me, even if it's fake. you can lead me on and leave these questions in my sheets. i'm under it, i made my bed and i'm still wondering, i'm wondering why do all the monsters come out at night? why do we sleep when we want to hide? why do i run back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? why am i a sucker for all your lies? strung out like laundry on every line...why do i come back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? thinkin' about you, you're in my head, even without you, i still feel dead. why do i run back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? dead, thinking about you, you're in my head, even without you, i still feel dead...why do i run back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? i'm wondering, why do all the monsters come out at night? why do we sleep when we want to hide? why do i run back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? why am i just a sucker for all your lies? strung out like laundry on every line...why do i come back to you, like i don't mind if you fuck up my life? like i don't mind if you fuck up my life" ― all time low (featuring blackbear), monsters
and now here are a few more quotes from bodhinku from past blogs to help add to the dark/light confusion of this blog's meaning...
"in trying to understand myself, and things that really make me glow with happiness, i created something special here...one fusion joined together from my psyche, dreams, visions, feelings, emotions, thoughts, and illuminations from the inner workings of my combined mind, heart, and soul" ― bodhinku, zen to me
"she is true magical realism, a sunflower that glows in the night like a supernova...she is a floral illumination emanating a sunny radiance coated with sprinkles of stardust...she is my iluminada: a glowing effervescence both in my dreams all night and daydreams all day...she's my bubbly surrealist sunflower melded into a celestial body, mixing two impossible opposites of sunlight with starlight, a beautiful oxymoron that just cannot be described with words ― bodhinku, illuminada
"look at its shape, with vibrant yellows and oranges, a sunflower can brighten your day...it's as if it is smiling like a happy face painted on the sun...so if you do only one thing all day, let it be to smile, so you can brighten the day of others around you, just like the sunflower" ― bodhinku, the sunflower
"i really need to be illuminated daily by things that are inspiring to me, things than make me smile, giggle, and glow from my deepest depths...illuminating my inner shadows, those hidden dark parts of me, personal secrets that make me who i am, even if i am not proud of them" ― bodhinku, illuminated
"the sunflower is truly the "sun's flower", and its story is so beautifully romantic...after sunset, the sunflower goes to sleep at night facing to the east, just waiting all night long in its darkness for the love of its life, the sun, to rise up and illuminate it at daybreak and capture its heart. so much so, that the sunflower slowly moves each minute throughout the day, tracking and following the sun across the entire sky until it sets in the west, when the sunflower closes up and swivels back around to the east, proceeds to go to sleep in that position, just waiting all night once more to do it all over again the next sunrise... " ― bodhinku, big part of my zen
"i need a focus on all the beauty surrounding me, i need zen, rather than any sort of focus on all the other crazy ugliness that is surrounding me, as the state of affairs where i live in the state of california is permeating into my peaceful state of mind...i need zen, it is like a beautiful prayer to my inner peace...i need to meditate more now than ever...breathe, relax, let go...refocus, re-center" ― bodhinku, i need zen
"i gotta let it all go, let it be, focus instead on nature, and internalize my spiritual connection of the beauty around me, which will refreshen me again, enlightening me with the real meaning of my own nature...let that soothe me, calm me, and recenter me in peace" ― bodhinku, beautiful prayer to inner peace
"this is truly zen for me...i need beautiful places like mount shasta to feed my soul and soothe my pains, emotionally and physically..." ― bodhinku, a beautiful zen
"i dislike being in a state of being where i have been finding myself not at peace within myself, becoming unbalanced and unwelcomingly frustrated lately with our world...i need zen to redistribute myself evenly once again" ― bodhinku, unbalanced
STORY BEHIND THIS IMPRESSION
"i once told her i would wait for her forever, but forever was stolen from me in the whisper of her first lie" ― bodhinku, forever stolen
pictured here is a field of yellow wildflowers in front of the iconic devils tower with the milky way glowing in the sky above at devils tower national monument, wyoming...i was approaching the end of a month long 11,000 mile cross country photo journey last summer with my doggie, besos, and stayed the evening sitting cross-legged in this field of flowers with him laying at my side, just watching the stars over devils tower, contemplating my life, the universe and everything...such a beautiful and peaceful night shared and spent with a wonderful soul beside me...
one year later, with the state of affairs in this country, plus my own personal battles with in my soul, things are not so peaceful for me, but i have this beautiful memory to help balance me out...
and here is another meaningful song with truly meaningful lyrics to give listen...it is new alternative music, a really cool rocking tune, darker in meaning yet again like the others above, and again by an unknown band who is climbing up the alternative charts with this tune, a tune that reminds me of industrial rock music from the mid 1990s in the style of nine inch nails: "someone else" by rezz and grabbitz ...(just click on any of words in the blue links to listen to the song)...
"i wake up in the bed you made, the one where you're supposed to lay with me. i smell you on the pillowcase, but don't see your face, and that's okay with me. i never thought i'd see the day that i'd see you as somebody i could hate. i guess that's just the price i pay for the blood-red flags that i walked past every day. who are you when I'm not looking? despite those eyes that hooked me, when i'm not looking, you are someone else, someone else, someone...who are you when I'm not looking? i doubt you even know yourself, despite those lies that took me, when I'm not looking, you are someone else...hey, is it me, did i fly you away? am i wrong? are you not who i say? if i call, which one of you will answer anyway? who are you when i'm not looking? despite those eyes that hooked me, when i'm not looking, you are someone else...who are you when i'm not looking? i doubt you even know yourself. despite those lies that took me, when i'm not looking, you are someone else, someone...when i'm not looking, you are someone else" ― rezz and grabbitz, someone else
“at present i absolutely want to paint a starry sky. it often seems to me that night is still more richly coloured than the day; having hues of the most intense violets, blues and greens. if only you pay attention to it, you will see that certain stars are lemon-yellow, others pink or a green, blue and forget-me-not brilliance. and without my expatiating on this theme, it is obvious that putting little white dots on the blue-black is not enough to paint a starry sky.” ― vincent van gogh
HISTORY OF DEVILS TOWER
"she comes to me bearing flowers, but she is only a beautiful lie, wrapped in untruth and shrouded with omission" ― bodhinku, beautiful lie
devils tower is an astounding geologic feature that protrudes out of the prairie surrounding the black hills in northeastern wyoming. it is considered sacred by the native americans and indigenous people of the northern plains. hundreds of parallel cracks make it one of the finest crack climbing areas in north america. devils tower entices us to learn more, explore more and define our place in the natural and cultural world
the name "devils tower" originated in 1875 during an expedition led by colonel richard irving dodge, when his interpreter reportedly misinterpreted a native name to mean "bad gods tower". all information signs in that area use the name "devils tower", following a geographic naming standard whereby the apostrophe is omitted...
devils tower (also known by the native americans as bear lodge butte) is a butte composed of igneous rock in the black hills of northeastern wyoming. it rises 1,267 feet (386 m) above the belle fourche river, standing 867 feet (265 m) from summit to base. the summit is 5,112 ft (1,559 m) above sea level. devils tower was the first united states national monument, established on september 24, 1906, by president theodore roosevelt. in recent years, about 1% of the monument's 400,000 annual visitors climbed Devils Tower, mostly using traditional climbing techniques.
climbing devils tower
in recent years, climbing devils tower has increased in popularity. the first known ascent of devils tower by any method occurred on July 4, 1893, and is accredited to william rogers and willard ripley, local ranchers in the area. they completed this first ascent after constructing a ladder of wooden pegs driven into cracks in the rock face. a few of these wooden pegs are still intact and are visible on the tower when hiking along the 1.3-mile (2.1 km) tower trail at devils tower national monument. over the following thirty years, many climbs were made using this method before the ladder fell into disrepair.
the first ascent using modern climbing techniques was made by fritz wiessner with william p. house and lawrence coveney in 1937. wiessner led almost the entire climb free, placing only a single piece of fixed gear, a piton, which he later regretted, deeming it unnecessary.
in 1941, george hopkins parachuted onto devils tower, without permission, as a publicity stunt resulting from a bet. he had intended to descend by a 1,000 ft (300 m) rope dropped to him after successfully landing on the butte, but the package containing the rope, a sledge hammer and a car axle to be driven into the rock as an anchor point slid over the edge. as the weather deteriorated, a second attempt was made to drop equipment, but hopkins deemed it unusable after the rope became snarled and frozen due to the rain and wind. hopkins was stranded for six days, exposed to cold, rain and 50 mph (80 km/h) winds before a mountain rescue team led by jack durrance, who had successfully climbed devils tower in 1938, finally reached him and brought him down. his entrapment and subsequent rescue was widely covered by the media of the time...
today, hundreds of climbers scale the sheer rock walls of devils tower each summer. the most common route is the durrance route, which was the second free route established in 1938. there are many established and documented climbing routes covering every side of the tower, ascending the various vertical cracks and columns of the rock. the difficulty of these routes range from relatively easy to some of the most challenging in the world. all climbers are required to register with a park ranger before and after attempting a climb. no overnight camping at the summit is allowed; climbers are required by law to return to base on the same day they ascend.
the tower is sacred to several plains tribes, including thelLakota, cheyenne and kiowa. because of this, many native american leaders objected to climbers ascending the monument, considering this to be a desecration. the climbers argued that they had a right to climb the tower, since it is on federal land. a compromise was eventually reached with a voluntary climbing ban during the month of june when the tribes are conducting ceremonies around the monument. climbers are asked, but not required, to stay off the tower in june. according to the pbs documentary, in the light of reverence, approximately 85% of climbers honor the ban and voluntarily choose not to climb the tower during the month of June. however, several climbers along with the mountain states legal foundation sued the park service, claiming an inappropriate government entanglement with religion...
geologists studied devils tower in the late 19th century and came to the conclusion that it was formed by an igneous intrusion. modern geologists agree that it was formed by the intrusion of igneous material, but not on exactly how that process took place. several believe the molten rock composing the tower might not have surfaced; others are convinced the tower is all that remains of what once was a large explosive volcano. in 1907, geologists theorized that devils tower must be an eroded remnant of a laccolith...a laccolith is a large mass of igneous rock which is intruded through sedimentary rock beds without reaching the surface, but makes a rounded bulge in the sedimentary layers above. this theory was quite popular in the early 20th century, since numerous studies had earlier been done on laccoliths in the southwestern united states. other theories have suggested that devils tower is a volcanic plug or that it is the neck of an extinct volcano. some pyroclastic material of the same age as devils tower has been identified elsewhere in wyoming.
devils tower did not visibly protrude out of the landscape until the overlying sedimentary rocks eroded away. as the elements wore down the softer sandstones and shales, the more resistant igneous rock making up the tower survived the erosional forces. as a result, the gray columns of devils tower began to appear as an isolated mass above the landscape.
as rain and snow continue to erode the sedimentary rocks surrounding the tower's base, more of devils tower will be exposed. nonetheless, the exposed portions of the tower still experience certain amounts of erosion. cracks along the columns are subject to water and ice erosion. erosion due to the expansion of ice along cracks and fractures within rock formations is common in colder climates, a prime example being the columnar “hoodoo” formations at bryce canyon national park. portions, or even entire columns, of rock at devils tower are continually breaking off and falling. piles of broken columns, boulders, small rocks, and stones, called scree, lie at the base of the tower, indicating that it was once wider than it is today
native american culture and bear lodge ( devils tower)
according to the native american tribes of the kiowa and lakota, a group of girls went out to play and were spotted by several giant bears, who began to chase them. In an effort to escape the bears, the girls climbed atop a rock, fell to their knees, and prayed to the great spirit to save them. hearing their prayers, the great spirit made the rock rise from the ground towards the heavens so that the bears could not reach the girls. the bears, in an effort to climb the rock, left deep claw marks in the sides, which had become too steep to climb. those are the marks which appear today on the sides of devils tower. when the girls reached the sky, they were turned into the stars of the pleiades.
another version tells that two sioux boys wandered far from their village when mato the bear, a huge creature that had claws the size of tipi poles, spotted them, and wanted to eat them for breakfast. he was almost upon them when the boys prayed to wakan tanka the creator to help them. they rose up on a huge rock, while mato tried to get up from every side, leaving huge scratch marks as he did. finally, he sauntered off, disappointed and discouraged. the bear came to rest east of the black hills at what is now bear butte. wanblee, the eagle, helped the boys off the rock and back to their village. a painting depicting this legend by artist herbert a. collins hangs over the fireplace in the visitor's center at devils tower.
in a cheyenne version of the story, the giant bear pursues a large group of girls and kills most of them. two sisters escape back to their home with the bear still tracking them. they tell two boys that the bear can only be killed with an arrow shot through the underside of its foot. the boys have the sisters lead the bear to devils tower and trick it into thinking they have climbed the rock. the boys attempt to shoot the bear through the foot while it repeatedly attempts to climb up and slides back down leaving more claw marks each time. the bear was finally scared off when an arrow came very close to its left foot. this last arrow continued to go up and never came down.
wooden leg, a northern cheyenne, related another legend told to him by an old man as they were traveling together past the devils tower around 1866–1868. a native american man decided to sleep at the base of bear lodge butte next to a buffalo head. in the morning he found that both he and the buffalo head had been transported to the top of the rock by the great medicine man with no way down. he spent another day and night on the rock with no food or water. after he had prayed all day and then gone to sleep, he awoke to find that the great medicine man had brought him back down to the ground, but left the buffalo head at the top near the edge. wooden leg maintained that the buffalo head was clearly visible through the old man's spyglass. at the time, the tower had never been climbed and a buffalo head at the top was otherwise inexplicable. the buffalo head gives this story special significance for the northern cheyenne. all the cheyenne maintained in their camps a sacred teepee to the great medicine man containing the tribal sacred objects. in the case of the northern cheyenne, the sacred object was a buffalo head...
native american names for the monolith include "bear's house", "bear's lodge", "bear's tipi", "home of the bear", "bear's lair"...in 2005, a proposal to recognize several native american ties through the additional designation of the monolith as bear lodge national historic landmark met with opposition from united states representative barbara cubin, arguing that a "name change will harm the tourist trade and bring economic hardship to area communities"...in november 2014, arvol looking horse proposed renaming the geographical feature "bear lodge" and submitted the request to the united states board on geographic names. a second proposal was submitted to request that the u.s. acknowledge what it described as the "offensive" mistake in keeping the current name and to rename the monument and sacred site bear lodge national historic landmark. the formal public comment period ended in fall 2015. local state senator ogden driskill vehemently opposed the change. the name was not changed.
modern culture and devils tower
the 1977 movie by steven speilberg starring richard dryfuss, close encounters of the third kind used the formation of devils tower as a plot element and as the location of its climactic scenes. its release was the cause of a large increase in visitors and climbers to the monument...similarly, the 2011 comedy, paul, starring seth rogen as a quirky and sarcastic pot-smoking alcohol loving alien trying to escape his life of captivity, used the devils tower formation at the film's climax as an homage to close encounters of the third kind....and, the native american story of the formation of the stars of the pleiades at devils tower is featured in the 2014 science documentary series cosmos: a spacetime odyssey.
"you have to spin a good yarn before you can weave a great dream" ― seth rogen, paul
"i figured it out, that's all. will you just listen?...have you ever looked at something and it's crazy, and then you looked at it in another way and it's not crazy at all?... don't be scared. just don't be scared. i feel really good. everything's gonna be alright. i haven't felt this good in years." ― richard dreyfuss, close encounters of the third kind
MORE QUOTES FOR EXTRA MEANING
and here is another song with lyrics that connect with the image title, and the deeper theme of this blog today...it is a little newer tune from a favorite modern rock band of mine: "deal with the devil" by pop evil ...(just click on any of words in the blue links to listen to the song)...
"i can't get away with murder. i am bound to take it further. i took the pills, i've been consumed. i drank the water, i had to choose. i'm still here with a fire burning, burning inside. if you want to burn, light it up, light up, let it rise. when you're high, who ya flying for? when you ride, who ya riding for? when you toast, who ya drinking for? when you play, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil...i have found comfort in someone. now i'm bound, empty and hollow. i took the pills, i've been consumed. i drank the water, i had to choose. i'm still here with a fire burning, burning inside. if you want to burn, light it up, light up, let it rise. when you're high, who ya flying for? when you ride, who ya riding for? when you toast, who ya drinking for? when you play, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil...let it rise...when you're high, who ya flying for? when you ride, who ya riding for? when you toast, who ya drinking for? when you play, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil, gotta deal with the devil..." ― pop evil, deal with the devil
“breathe in, breathe out. all the blessings of the universe that we may overlook are contained in the entirety of a breath. breathe in, breathe out. each breath is the sun flowering our earth, fresh water filling our oceans, and the blue skies clearing our minds. infinite emotions are contained within every breath, and by the breath we can always realize the beauty within it all. breathe in, breathe out" ― lao tzu, tao te ching
"to those who ride the waves on their own seas and lose sight of the shore. who discard the rules, the labels and the chains that once bound them, in search of the truth of their heart. to the ones who are fueled by the authentic and the uncensored, no matter how gritty the taste at times....here’s to the mismatched puzzle pieces that don’t get invited to join in all the reindeer games; that get left behind in the dust to learn their own way to fly. who in their sacred solitude grace the skies with wings of freedom and a destiny born of soul fire.....to the rare, unearthly beings who walk the road less traveled, taking the adventure that rises on this path with purpose and passion. who are brought alive by the fire in their blood and the longing threaded through their being" ― c. ara campbell, an ode to the misfits
"we are no longer trapped by the webs of lies and inferiority that once held us. we are reclaiming our birthrights as divine channels of art, music, dreams and desires. and oh, how the old powers that are falling away fear us and the way we shake the foundations of the old world free from their once clutched fingers...we, the ones who howl our wild truth to the skies" ― c. ara campbell, catalysts for change
"from the moment we first enter this world we are every day each given a choice: what will we do with this gift of life we have been given? will we spend it tending only to ourselves or the well-being of others? will we answer bravely our calling or instead ignore it for what’s easy? will we settle and sit idle or rise to our highest illumination, fight for that version of ourselves that can bring most good and beauty to the wider world around us? in this life, we are each free to make this choice for our ourselves. our only responsibility is making certain it is one we can live with." ― beau taplin, the secret
"i am terrified by those solitudes! when foul weather is unleashed in that part of the world, the rain seems kin to the devil; the waters of the river and the sea and sky couple, bellowing. a forsaken land where even letters arrive wilted, withered by distances, where hearts petrify and are altered" ― pablo neruda, passion and impression
"you can cut all the flowers but you cannot keep spring from coming...i love you as the plant that never blooms but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers; thanks to your love, a certain solid fragrance risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body" ― pablo neruda, all the odes
"when we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. the challenge will not wait. life does not look back. a week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny" ― paulo coelho, the devil and miss prym
"there is a moment in every day when it is difficult to see clearly: evening time. light and darkness blend, and nothing is completely clear nor completely dark" ― paulo coelho, the alchemist
"with me, illusions are bound to be shattered. i am here to shatter all illusions. yes, it will irritate you, it will annoy you - that's my way of functioning and working. i will sabotage you from your very roots! unless you are totally destroyed as a mind, there is no hope for you." ― osho, the book of wisdom
"the sun continued to lower itself, [illuminating the lower horizon], glowing for as far as the eye could see, before finally, slowly, vanishing beneath the waves [of flowers]. the moon continued its slow drift upward, shimmering as it turned a thousand different shades of yellow, each paler than the last, before finally becoming the color of the stars" ― nicholas sparks, a walk to remember
"listen: there’s a hell of a good universe next door; let’s go" ― e. e. cummings
"we are each our own devil, and we make this world our hell" ― oscar wilde
"love is a portion of the soul itself...and it's of the same nature as the celestial breathing of the atmosphere of paradise" ― victor hugo, les miserables
"he is one of those who has had the wilderness for a pillow, and called a star his brother. alone. but loneliness can be a communion" ― dag hammarskjold, markings
"you have to find what sparks a light in you, so that you, in your own way, can illuminate the world" ― oprah winfrey
“i no longer believed in the idea of soul mates, or love at first sight. but i was beginning to believe that a very few times in your life, if you were lucky, you might meet someone who was exactly right for you. not because he was perfect, or because you were, but because your combined flaws were arranged in a way that allowed two separate beings to hinge together" ― lisa kleypas, blue-eyed devil
“"no more words. in the name of this place we drink in with our breathing, stay quiet like a flower. so the nightbirds will start singing" ― jalaluddin rumi, the soul of rumi
ABOUT THE IMPRESSION
"with being a buddhist, it's weird, that i do not enjoy meditation...it's like exercise, i need to do it to stay healthy, and always feel better afterwards..." ― bodhinku, meditation is exercise
in my photography, i always use filters to create longer exposure effects and to balance the light in my composition in-camera...i often use as many as four filters at time, and i always use at least one filter...for this exposure, to get the effects and balance i was looking for, i used two progrey filters in the capture of this composition...
this composition is comprised of two exposures taken in the same frame about 5 hours apart, and then merged/blended together using adobe photoshop cc to create one single frame impression...for the milky way and stars part of this composition, no filters were used...
but for the yellow flower field part of this impression, to allow for a much longer exposure (10 stops) to soften the flowers (moving ever so slightly) and add extra saturation naturally in camera with all the greens and yellows, i chose to used magnetic 3.0nd progrey antarctica filter combined with a 0.9 gnd progrey aurora filter to help balance in-camera overall the image the way i envisioned it, and stop down the much brighter sky, about 3 stops brighter than the rest of the sunset sky, and way too bright in contrast with devil's tower and the flower field in the immediate foreground (for blending purposes) ...along with the progrey g-120z magnetic holder to hold both filters and secure them to my nikon d810 mounted with a nikkor 24mm f/1.4 prime lens...
i wish to openly thank my sponsors who have always supported me through both the good and bad times...for truly this long exposure impression would not be possible without the use of my trusty dolica tripods in combination with the progreyusa filters which i use with every photo i take...
"if i open my eyes, if i cry, if i think, if i sigh, if i giggle, if i dance, if i love, if i breathe, then i have lived a full days worth of life" ― bodhinku, if
"contemplate without thinking. stop the world. slow down everything. shut off the noise. relax. seize this moment. reconnect. feel and sense what surrounds you. listen to all the colors of light that envelope you. see the melody and harmony that floats about unnoticed. taste the solitude of all this wonderment. smell the beautiful silence. now discover your peaceful serenity. then, reach out and touch your faith with all your senses. this is my world. awaken!" ― bodhinku, my world
above all else as always, i hope this message and impression find you well.
please visit me at:
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