The Fenn Diagrams

Journeys Inspired by The Thrill of the Chase

The Junior Oxford Dictionary is Losing Touch with Nature

Forrest Fenn wants to get kids off the couch and out of doors.  What does this news say about our culture when “selfie stick” & “hashtag” replace words like “acorn” and “otter”?                    : (

Sharing this post from Lady Muir:

I was shocked to read the list of nature words removed from the Jr. Oxford Dictionary in the last decade. What follows are excerpts from an essay that explores the intersection between language and life.

via Let Nature Words Live — LadyMuir

How do Gemstones get their Colors ? — Know-It-All

Reblogged this because it’s kinda cool:

The most common cause of color in gemstones is the presence of a small amount of a transition metal ion. Most gemstones are allochromatic, meaning that they are colored by impurities or trace elements in their crystal structure.

via How do Gemstones get their Colors ? — Know-It-All

Portal

P1000420

I won’t be making it to this year’s Fennboree, but if I could, I would take a moment in Santa Fe to get a look at an ancient wrought iron gate on East Palace Avenue, the site where dozens if not hundreds of scientists, mathematicians, and physicists, after meeting with gatekeeper Dorothy McKibben, disappeared from sight beginning in April 1943.P1000401

(Well, first I might stop at that French pastry shop at La Fonda where Amy bought those gorgeous treats for Forrest’s book signing last September.)

Said portal transported those invited to the site of the Los Alamos Ranch School on a mesa in New Mexico.  You probably know (part of) the rest of the story, but for me, I learned a lot from a book called Bomb, by Steve Sheinkin, my newest favorite non-fiction author.  Wow.  He used to write textbooks for schools but kept notes on all the things they wouldn’t let him put in–fascinating stuff I should have learned.   Sheinkin puts it together in a compelling and quick read.  (Young Adult level but hey, who’s got time for an academic treatise these days?)

So back to the story:  the race between the Americans and the Germans to develop the bomb; some very, very brave Norwegians on a mission; the spies who wanted to steal the plans for Stalin;  the guys who just wanted to give it to the Russians so there wouldn’t be only one superpower in possession of the new and terrible weapon of mass destruction.

When I was young, my ideas of Russian spies were partly based on Boris and Natasha, and hearing intimations about the McCarthy era excesses.  Somehow my public school history classes never got much past the Civil War by the end of the school year, hence the black holes in my knowlege.  (No, that’s not a typo;  it’s spelled Fenn’s way.)

 

[Side note:  There was a Rocky and Bullwinkle episode titled Buried Treasure.  Hmm.  Frostbite Falls?]P1000443

 

I could also rave about Sheinkin’s newest book,  Most Dangerous:  Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret Viet Nam War.  I have no excuse for not knowing or remembering more about the topic, having been of school age when it was in the newspapers, except that the facts didn’t all make it into the media at the time.  I wish that weren’t still true. History gives us perspective if we’d only choose to look at the parallels in our own day.  Does your view of Ellsberg color your impression of Snowden?  What caused Benjamin Arnold to switch sides?  Had you even heard of the Port Chicago 50?

Do you agree with Abraham Lincoln?

“I am a firm believer in the people.  If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis.  The great point is to bring them the real facts.”

(Check out Steve Sheinkin’s  other books like King George:  What Was His Problem?  or The Port Chicago 50:  Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights or  Lincoln’s Grave Robbers, etc.)

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The Call of Distant Places – Book Launch for Forrest Fenn’s Latest

(If I weren’t eighteen hours away . . . )

Leon Gaspard

Charmay Allred invites you to an autograph party

Please join us and bring a friend

Leon Gaspard – The Call of Distant Places

A new book by Forrest Fenn and Carleen Milburn

Monday September 14, 2015

5-7 pm

La Fonda Hotel

Santa Fe Room

Light refreshments will be served

Please RSVP by Sept 10 to:leongaspardbook@gmail.com

Discovering a real Jurassic Park

What a cool opportunity!

highland hind

P1080035A ranch. Somewhere high in north-western Montana. We’re fly fishing in the baking heat, casting for trout, listening to the trickle of clear spring creeks and glimpsing sleek, fast-moving shapes in the shadows.

It should be relaxing, but I’m distracted. I discovered in a chance conversation with the rancher’s wife earlier in the morning that at least two dinosaurs are entombed in rock on their land and she promised a ride to where the university volunteers are digging – and spending the long scorching summer.

“Yeah, they’re all living up there in the rocks, right beside the rattlers,” said the woman with a  real life Jurassic Park on her land. “Someone flew over the ranch in a hang glider years ago and discovered the site and they’ve been working on it on and off ever since.”

The Jeep bounced, rattled and shuddered its way over a track more suited to cowboys…

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Catching Up is Hard to Do (hum to the tune by Neil Sedaka)

Kayak and lily pads Time on the water, priceless.  Home again?  Also priceless, but busy.  I was north.  I was east.  Was I west, “in the mountains somewhere north of Santa Fe?”  No, darn it.  Not yet.  But this bronze reminded me of the drawing in the Thrill of the Chase book.kids sculpture columns Another great thing about the road trip?  Listening to the audio version of The Black Count, a true story about Alexandre Dumas’ pere by Tom Reiss.  Fascinating.  The Count of Monte Cristo was one of my first favorites.  I read an old copy found in the attic.  Next best was the 1998 French miniseries of it starring Gerard Depardieu.  I didn’t mind the subtitles, it was so engrossing.  And now to learn how so much of it was based on his own father’s experiences (including hidden treasure), enlightening.  Also, it explained a lot of the history of the French revolution/devolution/rise of Napoleon, areas my education was thin on.

Minnetrista

Minnetrista

So, my treasures when I arrived home?  A lawn turned to meadow, wild blackberries to forage, and a garden exploding with cukes, beans, and tomatos, etc.  Now that the pickles and jams are in the cupboard and the beans and tomatos in the freezer, except for the awesome salads Caprese and salsa verdes and, well, you get the idea.

Jungle garden

Jungle garden

Intrepid came to visit and fortunately she loves to pick berries, dig potatos, etc., just happy to be outdoors.  She’s begun her fourth (and purportedly toughest) year of residency.  Six twelve hours days on for a month, then six twelve hour nights for a month, then same at a different hospital, rinse, wash, repeat….  I’d help her if I could.  The least I can do is give her organic veggies. pickle pot

From “Beowulf” (The Other Beowulf)

A Year In Verse

From “Beowulf and the Fire-Dragon”:

Hold thou now fast, O earth,now men no longer can,
The treasure of mighty earls.From thee brave men won it
In days that are long gone by,but slaughter seized on them,
Death fiercely vanquished them,each of my warriors,
Each one of my people,who closed their life-days here
After the joy of earth.None have I sword to wield
Or bring me the goblet,the richly wrought vessel.
All the true heroes haveelsewhere departed!
Now must the gilded helmlose its adornments,
For those who polished itsleep in the gloomy grave,
Those who made ready erstwar-gear of warriors.
Likewise the battle-sarkwhich in the fight endured
Bites of the keen-edged bladesmidst the loud crash of shields
Rusts, with its wearer dead.Nor may the woven mail
After the chieftain’s deathwide with a champion rove.
Gone is the joy of harp,gone is the music’s mirth.
Now the hawk goodly-wingedhovers not through the…

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The Sonnets

Forrest Fenn is writing poetry again.  I’d love to watch over his shoulder and see him at work. Is it a messy process with lots of words crossed out?  Or does he compose it in his head and only write what works? Does he adhere to form or formula?  Or is he a free spirit, free verse wordsmith?

English: Title page of Shakespeare's Sonnets (...

English: Title page of Shakespeare’s Sonnets (1609) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Photo credit Wikipedia

Apparently William Shakespeare  worried about leaving a legacy.  At least the young man narrating the Bard’s first  dozen or three sonnets did.  He stood gazing marvelously in the mirror, pondering, and concluded that he’d just have to get married and have a son. {Okay.  That’s more abbreviated than even a Cliff’s Notes version.} But, it made me think of the last chapter in Forrest Fenn’s Too Far To Walk where he gazes with marvel(?) in his mirror in a closing poem.

Legacy~~~

“Oh very young.  What will you leave us this time?” Cat Stevens

Where the Wild Thyme Blows

Thyme

Thyme

I know a bank where the wild thyme blows….

Wm. Shakespeare

No wild times in Santa Fe next month.  The Fenn gathering at the Loretto Inn and Spa has been canceled.

I’d like to have attended, and not just to meet the competition, though that in itself might prove fascinating.

And not that it would have been really wild, but you never know.

English: Wild thyme in the flower bed of a &qu...

English: Wild thyme in the flower bed of a “garden à la française” in the park of the castle of Champs-sur-Marne (Seine-et-Marne), France. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

The Architect

English: A rough-sawn hemlock timber frame hor...

According to Forrest Fenn, the poem was written by an architect.

1900 barn

Barn built by Rich brothers in 1900 on the family farm

 

 

I saw this cool post on ‘poems that look like what they’re about’ and, of course, thought of the Thrill of the Chase treasure poem.

Is the poem a map?

 

Old barn in a valley

Synchronicity.

 

stone barn

Some things are built to last, like the poem—

—or the treasure’s resting spot, good for thousands of years.

 

Some things come crashing down—

—like your hopes if/when someone else finds the bronze chest.

 

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(Unless you’ve stored your treasures where they will not rust or be stolen.)

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I used to think that I had an answer to everything and wished that people would ask me the questions. Now, as I find myself aging, I know I don't have any answers and hope that people don't ask me any questions. .

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peace, poesis & wild holy earth

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A great WordPress.com site

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Journeys Inspired by The Thrill of the Chase

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"Something hidden. Go and find it. Go and look behind the Ranges." - Rudyard Kipling

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