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Frank E. Baker

Frank E. Baker

Voices in the Wind: Personal note from the author

When we behold the raw, stunning beauty of Alaska, words often fail us. As others before me have observed, nature has already written all of the words and told all of the stories, from the age-old ebb and flow of glaciers to the succession of rocky moraine to alpine meadow and forest. The intoxicating fragrance of summer’s alpine wildflowers, for example, is a creation far beyond my meager craft.

One of the chief reasons for these writings is that I deeply love the land and am relentlessly haunted by it. When I refer to a high mountain top or deep valley, I have, in most instances, physically been there. However, my writings are not about geographic destinations, just as they are not about specific experiences. They are about places in the heart and the mind. They are about memories and wonder. They are about dreams.

I have attempted to keep my books small and light so they can be easily carried into the wilds. Tent walls do not make good companions, and after spending many hours of boredom inside such shelters waiting out storms, I have often wished for books like this.

Frank E. Baker 2

As I have already said, most of the words about any mountain, canyon, lake, stream, forest, marsh or meadow, have already been written. You are writing them with every breath, every step, every glance into the sky. I do not covet these words, because they are no more mine than that low-angled, rock slide ramping up to the ridge your heart seeks. In fact, it is my hope that my words will become your words that you carry into the mountains of your dreams.

The accompanying photos are no more than windows — fleeting glimpses of something perceived at an instant in time. They were taken with my cameras, but they are only images borrowed from creation’s master file.

When you begin to hear voices in the wind; when rocks, grass and trees no longer seem like extraneous, inanimate objects; when you feel the separation between yourself and the land narrowing; you will understand why I make no personal claim on these passages and verses.

Responses

  1. your poetry is really great, though I seldom like free verse. You see, I have been there too. May heaven permit me to return, tho I’m mostly crippled now. Thank you for the tast of the wind, the bite of the cold, and the diamond of the campfire!

    pat


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