WILDERNESS SKILLS

Culture Futurist®
4 min readDec 31, 2022

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A Poem by Theo Edmonds, Culture Futurist

You don’t wait for revelation when you pass the frontier

Desire is truth here.
That fiery stardust inside you
has pulled you a step beyond

Into a beyond place
where you use up everything
in service to joy

Beyond the old stories
you wove around yourself
for protection
for fascination.

A veneer of curiosity
manufactured for others.
Those you believed not trustworthy
with their own estimations.

Fiery stardust has pulled you
an uncomfortable step beyond
the old stories.

You don’t wait for revelation here.
When you pass the frontier,
wilderness skills are needed.

Wilderness skills
like those you learned
when you first fell in love.
That raw meat moment
where you first heard the calling
of your original name.

Away from the figuration
of settled houses
of etiquette protocols.
Crossing a frontier is
a high desert maneuver.
A fierce decision
made in the extreme honesty
of each new breath.

Wilderness skills are not learned as professions,
They are acquired through intention and vocation.
Radical, convergent release of all those heavy things you picked up and carried along your way to the frontier.

Vocation and navigation go hand in glove…
pavement to gravel
gravel to earth
earth to desire
(that holding of a star)

Pulled a step beyond the frontier
Your old stories
no longer seem big enough

Pulled a step beyond the frontier
you feel the aligning of crucible bones.
Homecoming.
The stories used to shape your presence,
back in settled houses
will not survive here.

Frontiers find their shape
among interior landscapes
made real in honest mirrors.

In this reflection is a realization:
You don’t really know language at all.
At least language capable of navigating
the well-worn and mapped out reflection
staring at you.
A reflection that makes no sense
once pulled a step beyond the frontier.

The loss of language hits hard.
If you don’t have language here,
here in your reflected face,
the reflection you thought you knew so well back in the settled houses,
then does language even exist at all?
What is the love language of wilderness?

As you begin flicking off old shallow reflections,
an intuition grows inside you
that deepness is dependable.

Moving past the frontier
requires reaching further in.
Inside to horizons we arrived at seasons ago
but were too busy performing
the shallow stories in settled houses
to notice.

In wilderness,
deepness is dependable.
Deepness is dependable.

I learned I was going to die in my early skin,
when I first learned to love.
Learning to be loved in return would take longer.
Learning to be loved in return is a wilderness skill.

In that early skin
warmth was a death quilt.
An exquisite corpse.
Pieced together with science, business and art.
Laid across a nation,
the quilt stitched together memories of those who
dared to cross frontiers.
Those who learned in early skin
that love is a wilderness skill.

Sometimes, David said,
the blessing of things skips past human curtains
hanging in settled houses.
Blessings require making a fierce decision
to walk lightly through deep woods.
Receiving blessing requires you to be equal to it.

Survivors of plagues know this.
Survivors of plagues feel guilty for knowledge sometimes.
Deepness, though, is dependable.

In the deep woods,
You must give things away
to become large enough,
to become light enough
to make fierce decisions
everyday.

Fierce decisions are those where
you feel your instinctual courage.
Courageous imagination
connecting head, heart, and hands
into a vocation of vision.

(In the wilderness,
far-off places are not silent
they just cannot be heard with yesterday’s eyes.)

Frontier vision requires more from you.
More than was required in old, settled houses.
When more is required
Deepness is dependable.

To find the ground that you were meant to stand on,
You don’t wait for revelation when you pass the frontier.
You make the fierce decision
to let go of those small names you once carried around,
room to room,
in old, settled houses
Those small names will only weigh you down here.

Fiery stardust has pulled you
an uncomfortable step beyond
Beyond your old stories
told in settled houses
written in etiquette protocols.

You don’t wait for revelation here.
When you pass the frontier,
Forging into the wilderness of unopened life, wonder calls you home.

Should you choose to answer,

to snatch back your stardust from the cold zone of those ransomed things,

Wilderness skills will be needed.

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Culture Futurist®

Rockies-based Culture Futurist ® from Appalachia. Pioneering into the wilderness of unopened life at intersection of Arts, Science, and Business.