...to slip beneath the surface and soar along the silent bottom of the sea agile and shining in water honeycombed with light.

— Ellen Meloy

The most provocative Ellen Meloy quotes that are little-known but priceless

The complex human eye harvests light.

It perceives seven to ten million colors through a synaptic flash: one-tenth of a second from retina to brain. Homo sapiens gangs up to 70 percent of its sense receptors solely for vision, to anticipate danger and recognize reward, but also—more so—for beauty.

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There are people who have no engaged conversation with the land whatsoever, no sense of its beauty or extremes or limits and therefore no reason to question their actions in a place that is merely backdrop.

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Before Alaska came along and ruined everything, one of every twenty-five square miles in America was Montanan. This much space has nurtured a healthy Cult of Place in which people find perfection, even divinity in the landscape.

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A map, it is said, organizes wonder.

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