The mountains around the valley provide me with my markers, the points on my own personal compass. When I feel adrift and untethered I look to those markers to re-center, re-anchor my sore spirit.
Can I see the grand majesty of Four Peaks, the distinctive yellow band of Wind Cave? Can I see the familiar wall of South Mountain, the stark point of Piestewa? Can I locate Tom’s Thumb, view the magical White Tanks, find the misty Estrellas in the distance? Where is Flat Iron and Weaver’s Needle? Where are the McDowells, the San Tans?
In life’s low and slow points, I feel my heart and soul pull my eyes to spot these markers. To savor past hikes and the peaceful, grounding moments spent on these slopes and peaks. To feel the harsh, cleansing desert sun above my head and the sharp, dry rocks of the trails below my feet.
You, mountains of granite and sandstone, filled with the Sonoran Desert’s magic grand and small, you are my markers. Thank you for your presence.