Rio Grande Gorge north of Questa, NM

PERSONAL ESSAYS AND VISIONS from 7,000 feet. For some who end up in the Terrible High Desert™ and mountains of northern New Mexico, the brutal portal is a kind of medicine. There’s something alien and ancient here that doesn’t need us. The late Bill Whaley inscribed the following in my copy of his Taos memoir Gringo Lessons not so long ago and nailed it. I also can’t imagine better validation. Thank you sir.

“You're one of the few who arrived and immediately experienced the spiritual imagination of the place and appreciated it in an articulate and instinctive way. What intrigues me is how many people move here and are tone deaf. I can't figure out why they are here since they might as well live in Colorado: beautiful but soulless...the chthonic spirits are absent. ‘Course sometimes a man needs relief from the resonating spirits. They can drive you mad.” 

 -Bill Whaley: Taos writer (Gringo Lessons), publisher (Horse Fly)

A few miles south of Colorado

Kathleen Jane Mills and I moved here from Kent County on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in the summer of ’99, surely the biggest thing we ever did except for getting married in the first place. As New York Times best-selling author James C. Moore (Bush’s Brain) put it in a review of my first book,

Buffalo Lights is the work of a man attuned to the world who sees it differently than you and I and writes about it with a language and a vision of life that is impossible to ignore.”

We gave it everything we had. I’m still here, but Kathy went to heaven without me in the spring of 2021. We were together for 44 years. There are dozens of posts that tell the story so you don’t need details here. Just don’t forget her. May you be as loved as I was.

Kathy in San Cristobal, summer of 2000

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PERSONAL ESSAYS AND VISIONS from 7,000 feet in northern New Mexico. Many photos. Share the beauty and the joy, she said. Never argue with an angel.



JOHN HAMILTON FARR is a writer/artist in the Terrible High Desert™ ☀️ ☀️ Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico, U.S.A.