Kurt Bell

A life of courage, joy and independence.

How I became reborn

How blind I was to the desert muse before Japan. Though I could never find her voice while I was away in that exotic land, surer still her absence had I never gone. If I’d remained in Japan my sight would have continued its myopic plunge into the familiar, the green and wet mountains and valleys there rising and widening in scale and contrived importance, ossifying at last into a world view of comprehensible dimension and satisfying importance. I would have at last died in my course there, satisfied of my living career, placated by my narrow world view, an invalid, comforted by my own deep ignorance. Since returning to America though, I face the familiar with alien eyes and foreign design. There is no more latent comfort in what was once all I knew. My weary eyes strain to discover the familiar. Old brain circuits crackle to life, mending failed, flawed or erred mental connections with material of another land and culture, values and meaning of a second and quite completed life. Tired limbs now become limber of the necessity of building this new life again, and old muscle memory is replaced with fresh reflex, guided of matured control and sensibility. It is with this reborn self that I have encountered and connected with my desert muse, found her fleeting across the wastes, utterly lost and invisible to the man I was, and was again; visible only now, as such a one as I could surely never meet or know over the course of just a single lifetime.

Entrance to the Volcano Wilderness

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