Upper Mississippi Mile 124 near St. Genevieve, MO – November 9, 2012
The sandbar underneath me is soft, the sky is sharp, dark, and splashed with stars. I stare up, my eyes lost in the distant points of light.
I can’t remember the last time I slept underneath the stars. No roof, no tent, no tarp, nothing between me and the night sky. It has been too long. I forgot how beautiful it is.
I love the rawness of it, the way it strips the world down. The stars, the wind, the sounds of night, they arrive unfiltered, full, like you’re part of it, not watching from behind a pane of glass, not hiding in a sanitized pocket of ripstop nylon.
It is not a glimpse, not a glance up before slipping inside a tent, not a peek out a window. It’s staring into the sky until your consciousness slips away, until you stop counting falling stars, until you drift to sleep as the heavens rotate above.