Evening in Continental Divide, NM

We have, over the life of fourwindowspress.com, presented poetry and essays about Continental Divide, New Mexico. It is a small place off Interstate 40 to the east of Gallup. The area has a variety of races and tribes, Navajo, Pueblo (especially Zuni and Acoma), Hispanics, people from the Middle East, and Anglos. The majority of the population are Native Americans. This photograph by Ethel Mortenson Davis is taken just on the other side of the fence around our house looking southwest–more west than south, at sunset. You can see the Zuni Mountains behind the rabbit brush, sagebrush, juniper, cedar, and piñon trees. There are about 360,000 acres of pristine wilderness in the Zuni Mountains. What you cannot see in the photograph are the elk, mule deer, jack rabbits, rattlesnakes, mountain lions, bobcats, lynx, black bears, grizzly bears, cattle, horses, coyotes, and dogs that sometimes make noises in the night that get our two wonderful dogs, Pax and Juneau, barking. This is only one angle from our house. The forest is thicker if you swing the camera lens just a little bit. From our second story you can see the red cliffs to the north and Mount Taylor, the area’s towering mountain rich in Navajo and Pueblo beliefs, to the east. We live in a wild, rural place that presents some challenges–we are sometimes without electricity or water for a day, but that also causes tourists to stop and get out their cameras.

Photograph by Ethel Mortenson Davis

11 Comments

Filed under Essays, Ethel Mortenson Davis, Photography

11 responses to “Evening in Continental Divide, NM

  1. fivereflections

    i traveled through NM in Feb 1970 – spent the night in ABQ – saw the sunrise, headed west on Interstate 40, drove over the mountains, saw stars in the shadow of the mountains, then saw the sunrise again – the first time i’ve ever seen two sunrises in on day… i enjoy reading your posts, as well as looking at the beautiful photos here. thanks so much for sharing.

  2. Julie Catherine

    Thomas, what a lovely bit of insight into your world – through your spoken word, and also through the eyes of Ethel’s wonderful photographs. Where I live in Canada, the landscapes are much different, and vary greatly from one province to another, from our east coast to the west. My favourite place is the interior of British Columbia; I lived there for a time and miss it still – especially the mountains and abundance of lakes. One day I will go back, as I want to live the rest of my days in the place where my heart resides. Thank you for sharing this; I, too, enjoy reading yours and Ethel’s posts and beautiful photographs. ~ Julie

  3. What a backyard……I once had the Missouri River for a back yard…and a few times, a front yard, too. haha It looks like a good panoramic picture for the four seasons. That was a nice narration, Thomas. I haven’t been in the desert areas for a while.

  4. Caddo Veil

    Hi friends–I’ve nominated you for the “Genuine Blogger Award”. Is this getting to be too much for you? Let me know–

  5. *sigh* I shall never forget the purpling sunset of NM; February, 20 years ago. I’ve no idea where I was, felt like the middle of no man’s land; crested buttes rising up between shanties and mobile homes, and that sky … how her beauty imprinted upon my mind to this day ~

  6. Wonderful place! I think I must have driven just past your backyard about a year ago on a road trip… this brings back memories of great travels in New Mexico. Next time I’ll drop in for a Southwest dinner and poetry.

  7. What magnificent land you live in, with such dramatic scenery. I went through NM a few times with my parents, (as a kid) and would love to go back, with a new appreciation of the people, the geography, and the wonder of it.
    Thank you for posting this view of your area – I’d love to see more!

  8. Wonderful post – I can only dream of such dramatic landscapes.

  9. I was blessed to be able to drive through this area multiple times on Christmas and summer vacation visits to family in Albuquergue, driving along I40. We usually stopped for walking around, gazing in awe, listening to wilflife, sipping on water, etc. Truly the Land of Enchantment. The area where you live is not overrun by tourists, like some other spots in New Mexico, and is thankfully still primarily Native American in population. Wonderful.

  10. W. D. Hubbard

    This is beautiful. I truly love the desert. It really gets inside you like few places on earth. Thank you for reminding me.

  11. Thank you for giving me a glimpse of “where you’re coming from”. 🙂

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