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Life in desert and beyond

Danny is a CEO. Not your typical CEO. On a recent trip to visit him in Fruita, Colorado, we went for a walk in the Grand Valley to inspect his farmland of poems and dreams. During our walk, he answered a phone call from one of his stakeholders. This stakeholder wanted a return on investment. He wanted to order a book of poems.

Lithic Bookstore & Gallery is the coolest bookstore you will ever encounter. Danny happens to be the founder and CEO, although you might mistake him for a local climbing bum. The bookstore, like Danny, is an adventure in words, space, time and humor. DO NOT FORGET HUMOR!

Danny and I explored his farmland together after not seeing each other for more than fifteen years. We studied the ancient Roman-inspired irrigation canals that bring life to the Valley after the mountains thaw and the snow drips downward. We talked about composting toilets, unfinished film projects, mountains, and the great bastards of literature. And we laughed about what we used to do for entertainment.

Do people really change? I am not completely sure. However, I do find the jokes get better with time. In ancient times, Danny and I climbed together. He invited me to tag along on a climbing trip at Devil’s Tower, Wyoming sometime in the late 1990s. Those days are like a needle on a record album for a short second. These past adventures are fossils stored in our bones. The scars from the ripped skin off our hands from climbing the ragged Tower are the same as a farmer tilling his land. It is part of the job, part of life. This is Danny’s new job. He tills the earth for words and writes poetry.

Our summit photo (see above) is one of thousands of summit photos taken each year. Now days, every second is recorded with phones while they climb the Tower. Our names are long gone from the log book at the summit. Danny’s bookstore is the log book. His gift for all these years is that he shares the Good Word of his sight, his hearing and his heart. His Tower rests in a comfortable room surrounded by books with good people.

Next time in Fruita, go read something at the Lithic Bookstore. Let the Good Words rest in you.

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