I find it beautiful. People under conviction of something bigger than themselves. The careless determination to pursue a passion beyond apprehensible logic.

Humans are a fickle bunch. We listen to the most deafening voices to determine what should be considered greatness… and what could easily be disregarded as irrelevant cacophony.

We are afraid of protruding. We are afraid of not conforming.

Then there are people like Leonard Knight. He just wanted to share love.

When Leonard passed away a few weeks ago, I knew I wouldn’t be the only one making the journey to Salvation Mountain to celebrate his life. And on that warm Saturday in March, the desert decided to speak.

The dry winds started to encroach with a gentle abrading touch. It never seemed to bother anyone for the love Leonard’s been so keen on sharing all his life was overwhelmingly restituted. I have never found Salvation Mountain so calm.

People had gathered from near and far. They all carried their colorful stories, their unique interactions and their vibrating images of Leonard. Family. Friends. Strangers.

As the desert whispered its final farewell, the patriot guard carried him home. Slab City said their farewells and the people painted him back into the mountain where he will permanently rest.

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