forest,

an apical biome maximizing density and diversity — a maxed-out evosystem, “heyday of the complexity churn.” We learn from the forests to, eventually, serve and teach them: upon centuries of gardening and guided evolution, the now-standing growths are diverser than anything before in natural history; “a redeemer of space,” the idealized forest “prototypes everything we build and do,” is an almost demetaphorized metaphor for text with its interliving diachronic perspectives — essentially, for culture. ■    Flight made Earths forests three-dimensional — traversable, hangable at any level from the treetops' windy light to the damp, dark, quiet depths… and down into the microscopic archeology of the teeming soil. Two opposing but equally fundamental thirsts we dive into the woods to quench: to roam freely and unconfinedly — and to remain, all the time, cozily walled, inside the rock, intimately local (“a world of here” in each mossy patch); complexity meaningifies a closed-but-open forestscape much as it does a densely lived city (contrast e.g. featureless fog which also walls you off but only to becloud, irritate).  ■    Arboreal mist establishes a hierarchy of “distances that matter”: how close or far something appears through the woods is just how reachable it is for an intakeful, open-eyed traveler uninterested in shortcuts; even before flight, “forest-walk days” were the best human-scale distance metric. “Let the trees restore” your sense of farth — numbed by the unconfined vastness above where infinities twinkle teasingly close but actual bodily closeness is awkward or pointless.

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