Shadow in a Stetson, Arizona

Copyright  Alice Starmore

Past Wickenberg I had to slow down and dawdle for suddenly there were Joshua trees. Dawdling turned into a full stop; the trees were like big, wonderful lavvy brushes and I could not just pass them by. They grew in what looked like gravel and from where they drew their water I just could not tell. In a way they were quite shocking; you could understand it if these desert dwellers were about a foot high, but whole trees?

I kept my camera busy and wasted time with delay switch and tripod, trying to get a shot of both my stetsoned shadow and that of a Joshua tree. Then there was a zone of gorges, the biggest of which was spanned by an elegant, spindly bridge. After that the highway followed a strath formed by the Big Sandy River. There were cultivated fields in places along the valley bottom, looking incongruous against the stoney bluffs that reared on either side to arid, flat-topped hills. And ever in the distance were the next ranges, fret-sawed out of the hazy blue sky.

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