Friday, March 11, 2011

cactusflower desert longings

it all started when missa gifted me these gorgeous vintage desert magazines.
1972, 1973... it was a good time to love the desert.
long before "coachella" was synonymous with hip music fest.

these magazines are chock-full of hidden abandoned spanish mines, unique prehistoric fish that only show up in seasonal streams of death valley, badlands, chalcedony, jackpots, Old Woman Mountains,
arroyos, the grooming habits of the cactus mouse, the White Mountain Apache Tribal Fair...

all sorts of goodies that make my heart's little dusty desert feet pitter patter.


my favorite might be the article about the lives and customs on the Navajo reservation circa 1972.
My heart beats in tandem with the lovely sisters above;
I want to ride a horse, weave on a loom,
and sit on a twisty old tree in a brilliant blue dress with moccasins.

missa also gave me this little tiny book, because, she said, it reminded her of darin (!!)
and i couldn't agree more, the snazzy little bandit.

missa is the best at themed packages, graciously giving me a bundle that brought together all the sweet warm golds and yellows of the desert sun. she had included this impossibly soft and silky yellow cactus blossom scarf which i immediately tied round my head on the night of our gathering, as you can see here. and which gives me some mysterious feeling, like a warm desert breeze on an october night...

needless to say, all this has me obsessing all over again about our trip we took round the southwest in october.
 

you probably saw plenty of it, but here are a few more photos that capture the feeling of wild land and ancient spirits that roam the deserts.





although it may be harsh and spiny, desolate, wild and bleak...



it is self protecting and vast. it holds all, it lives and breathes and returns.
the desert hides magic in the dry bones of its heart.


in the graveyards and the ruins of the people who have come together here,
under shockingly blue skies,
land of little rain, dust and wood and feather and stone.



and there is also honey,
squash blossom and hummingbird.

a place where old and new live together on the border of a spiritland unknown.

next time i go, this is how i wish i could travel:

i leave you with an invitation to watch the video i made of our southwest road trip set to music.
but i must warn you, it's ten minutes long....so only if you've got awhile to dream with me in desert land.

desert flowers from heather beatty on Vimeo.




13 comments:

laoi gaul~williams said...

i sat on a cold dark UK afternoon and dreamed~a wonderful film thank you
xoxoxo

Amy Beatty said...

So bugged!! I hate when I lose my comments.

But anyway.... This feels like HOME!!!! I love it xoxo. Matt and I get to do most of that same drive tonight and tomorrow, wish you were with us. But we are so excited for Nannys wedding - just two months away

ashley said...

Heather! Your family adventures always look so amazing! The photos and stories you produce always stir something in the (jealous) adventurer in me. The southwest is a destination I have yet to visit, but I have been longing to even more after that fun video!

ps- Darin IS the little bandit!? And that scarf is one-of-a-kind-beautiful! Dang.

Milla said...

Wowzers. I didn't actually know that this was the theme of Missa's glorious package. She is so thoughtful and talented. Those magazines look wicked. Personally I'd love to see MORE pictures from your trip, a form of armchair travel, as my grandma used to call it and a lovely one at that.

Having never been too drawn to the deserts, there is definitely a yen in me to visit the Southwest all the same, especially the Navajo Country. It makes my heart beat fast to think of the desert, there is something primordial about it. And though I much prefer to dream of the vast snowy shores of Alaska, I hope to make it out there some day.

These images certainly make that desire all the more stronger. I love that picture of your little niece in her prairie garb and the one of Darin in particular, they are like pieces of the some magical film yet to be shot.

Thank you for this little peek.

Claire said...

I love the desert so much. I was just looking at pictures of Santa Fe because their giant international folk festival info is up for this years event. Yeah, I still check the events calendars from a town I don't even live in anymore. *sigh*

We're going to go on a visiting trip through Portland, Davis, San Francisco, LA and San Diego this summer (my hubby has a class to take in San Diego and we're gonna make a thing of it, since we have tons of friends and family that we owe visits to) but part of me just wants to jet off to the desert and spend three weeks in Santa Fe instead.

Your post if giving me desert lust! It's all blustery and rainy and not at all desert like here at all. As for seedlings, no, nothing yet. I'm starting to get behind! I have spring break from school though, next week. We'll see how much I get done :)

Claire said...

I love the desert so much. I was just looking at pictures of Santa Fe because their giant international folk festival info is up for this years event. Yeah, I still check the events calendars from a town I don't even live in anymore. *sigh*

We're going to go on a visiting trip through Portland, Davis, San Francisco, LA and San Diego this summer (my hubby has a class to take in San Diego and we're gonna make a thing of it, since we have tons of friends and family that we owe visits to) but part of me just wants to jet off to the desert and spend three weeks in Santa Fe instead.

Your post if giving me desert lust! It's all blustery and rainy and not at all desert like here at all. As for seedlings, no, nothing yet. I'm starting to get behind! I have spring break from school though, next week. We'll see how much I get done :)

bonfire of my vanity said...

i love the desert! but man, i wouldn't want to live on the rez that the Dineh people live on. the conditions there are atrocious, as with most reservartions. like third world countries nestled in our first world country. it's a real tragedy how these people's plight is so unknown. they live in abject poverty, and on many rez's the life expectancy can be as low as forty five years old. can you believe that?

moonshinejunkyard said...

hey b, yeah, we went to south dakota a couple years back and spent some time on the Pine Ridge Rez. it's crazy the poverty there, but the people were very defensive and proud about their town and life. such an interesting and tragic dilemma, what has become of the native peoples of this land, something with no easy answers at this point. at least the dineh have tourism and market their gorgeous jewelry and handmade items, but of course even that is an consumerist repurcussion. such a weird country we live in. (and heartbreakingly beautiful too!)

mo marie said...

Hi Heather, love the pics in this blog. Especially you in your red dress next to the honey stand. You ladies match those peppers in the background so well! Gus and I took a long road trip 2 years ago all the way to Arkansas and this blog makes me miss those times. Nothing like hitting the road and enjoying the adventure of the unknown. : )

Missa said...

Yayyyy!!! Well, of course I LOVED this post :D Would you believe I found those mags for only 10 cents each?! I'm so glad you're enjoying them, I knew if anyone would, it would be you. Aren't all the adds with the old dudes and their metal detectors hilarious?! Treasure hunters!

Your travel pics are so wonderful. I'm still dreaming of heading out to the desert with our wee trailer!

Teenysparkles said...

nope nope nope, can't get enough of these images...you, the landscape the art are ALL so stunning! It breaks my heart just a tiny bit that I live in a country bereft of deserts. I think that you love the desert and the desert loves you.
xxx

Marika said...

It's so rainy in Portland, and watching your video makes me horribly nostalgic about living at the edge of the American SW. Seeing all that sunshine alone is absolutely wonderful! I hope I get to go back soon.

ps that red dress is lovely.

anne said...

the desert is a magical place. and this post captures that fact perfectly! such gorgeousness heather, i always love seeing your traveling pictures :D