The sound is faint, faint but familiar, small ripples on the Snake soften my mood; rocks and water competing for space. It seems ironic, the hard, immovable obstacles will eventually succumb to the flexible fluid. But I do not want that thought this morning, I want the present, I want the harmony they create, I want the voice of the river resting in my thoughts. The river is swift but the sound is slow, slow and soothing, settling into the background. Chortling sandhills, hidden in distant willows, soon add the calm of their rippling rhythm.
Light creases the horizon, it left yesterday with the promise of tomorrow. It left taking color and warmth westward allowing a massive ocean to share unlimited blue with an infinite sky. Silhouettes begin to enhance the morning, they mark a transition, a moment in time, a brief moment between night and sunrise, a moment when the sun fulfills its promise of tomorrow and begins today.
Standing between two giants, standing between Grand Teton and Yellowstone, I am in the company of many species but alone in the knowledge that boundaries define these parks. This land is public, part of an ecosystem supporting the draw, supporting the reason millions flow through these forests. Our rules are different here, less protective than those in the parks, but the Snake and sandhills follow a natural order, an order derived over eons of time. Their law is not bound by lines on a map. The parks are the heart and lungs of this ecosystem, Grand Teton and Yellowstone can be identified, defined without this supporting body, but standing alone they will not draw air, they will not pump life into this land. They can exist alone but they will not live, their soul, their reason for being, will disappear. We will not have their tomorrow.