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The Lonely Place

  ⁃  Notes

This weekend I visited the lonely place. This is a place where, a few times a day; early in the morning or late at night, I find myself alone and straining my senses to hear the faintest whispers of creation. Saturday looked like it would be clear, just like the last time in October. I looked forward to the night sky and in particular a cluster of stars that had sparkled near the horizon. They hung there again, shimmering on the edge of the atmosphere, visually closer than so many others. This time the group was a bit higher in the east. I took a few photos with my phone.

The stars in the eastern sky in November. The constellations Taurus, Perseus, Triangulum, Aries, and Orion
The constellations Taurus, Perseus, Triangulum, Aries, and Orion captured on a dark night with only a camera phone.

I was surprised by the results. The photos were so clear I decided to compare the photos to a star chart. The cluster is Pleiades, also known as The Seven Sisters, located in the constellation Taurus. The constellations Perseus, Triangulum, and Aries are also visible in the photo. Even Orion, the huntsman, is partially visible at the horizon behind a stand of bur oaks.

During my last visit in October I was up early, and though it was still dark, I decided to go for a run. The sky was as brilliant as before but this time the stars had shifted to the places assigned to the morning. As I began, I was unable to see more than ten feet in front of me and could hear only the gravel crunch under my feet. As I approached a spot where an abandoned house once stood, I heard something large on the road in front of me. My heart jumped and my feet came to an abrupt stop. I caught only a glimpse of a whitetail deer crossing the road when its antlers moved past the very lightest edge of the horizon. I squatted low to the ground and strained my eyes to see more of its silhouette but saw nothing. Instead, I heard the screech of barbwire pulled tight against the fence posts to my right. Then, just as quickly, the wires let loose with such force the sound vibrated up and down the road. His hooves pounded the ground as he raced away.

As I built this site, I wondered about what it would be, who it might help, and why it would exist. The Internet had become such a loud and awful place (and it’s only gotten worse). For some reason, I thought of this place, a lonely, quiet outpost in the country surrounded by stars. I wondered, what if this site lives here? This was the literal picture I gave myself when thinking of this website’s place on the internet. This lonely place, disconnected but part of the whole. I have tried to explain the motivation before but it wasn’t until this weekend I felt I could verbalize any of it. So if I maintain a presence on the Internet it should be here, apart from the polluted spaces, where I might hear my own voice and see what lies beyond. After all, even the brightest lights in the universe only appear in the quietest of places.


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