About 30 people were at the base. It was very subdued. Many wore black. The ages ranged from triplets (almost 3 years old) to elderly.
A VT state police officer and canine were parked close to the base camp on Bayley-Hazen Road.
A larger contingent apparently were on Route 100 and on the mountaintop. The mourners formed a circle at the base camp in the open field before wending their way, single file, up the steep slope.
The mountain is extremely dry (much different from when I hiked in the fall). It is as if Mother Earth has shed all her tears during that last storm.
A lone crow cawed in the distance, symbolic of death, nature’s metaphor contrasting to the sounds of motors and bleating beeps, warnings of dangers not visible through the trees.
Cody Michaels did a reading of “Crazy Horse” by John Trudell.
The ceremony on the platform was very quiet — beautiful poetry readings, statements, offerings of flowers, a very moving Sanskrit chant that vibrated through the trees and rocks. The ambiance was one of healing, forgiveness, sadness, transformation.
The mournful, eternal sound of a conch shell floated across the mountain top. Its brevity, a reminder of how we all are just blips on an infinite timeline. The mountain will be there, reborn, long after we have all passed on.
The mood was quite different from Monday.