One Day is there of the Series
One day is there of the series
Termed “Thanksgiving Day”
Celebrated part at table
Part in memory –
Neither Ancestor nor Urchin
I review the Play –
Seems it to my Hooded thinking
Had There been no sharp subtraction
From the early Sum –
Not an acre or a Caption
Where was once a Room
Not a mention whose small Pebble
Wrinkled any Sea,
Unto such, were such Assembly,
‘Twere “Thanksgiving day”
I felt like I needed to get something posted before food coma sets in. It is a beautiful day today but still windy. But I took a chance and ran out the door with the camera and around the neighborhood where the most interesting thing I found was the ornamental roses still blooming away. I used the big camera without a tripod and paid the price but a little painterly treatment in photoshop made those fuzzy edges look just right. I have to admit I always find Emily Dickinson a bit obscure but to me this poems speaks of how Thanksgiving is not just the one day we celebrate at present but the memory of all the Thanksgivings before and the memory of those who are no longer here to celebrate with us. This is particularly fitting for my family which has suffered several losses in the past few years. But on a happier note, all who remain will gather at my Mother’s house today.
Untitled Shaman Song
The great sea
frees me, moves me,
as a strong river carries a weed.
Earth and her strong winds
move me, take me away,
and my soul is swept up in joy.
-Uvavnuk (Iglulik Eskimo, 19th century) [translated by Jane Hirshfield]
I was going to go out for a camera walk but it was so windy I thought I would never get a good photograph because nothing would hold still. So I started looking around the house and decided to photograph some of my knick-knacks. I think I came by this Spirit Bear at Indian Market in Santa Fe one year but he has been with me long enough, I don’t really remember. I wanted to give him a more ethereal quality so added some textures and gave him a Georgia O’Keefe treatment in Topaz Impression (how appropriate!) Then I started looking for a poem. Not many poems about spirit bears and surprisingly few about bears, spirit animals, etc. I finally turned to gratitude in homage to Thanksgiving and nothing tripped my trigger there either. I finally found an anthology of Spiritual Poetry on the Poetry Foundation website and while Eskimos and spirit bears may not be a good fit, the Native American connection with nature and spirituality worked for me.
When the trees their summer splendor
Change to raiment red and gold,
When the summer moon turns mellow,
And the nights are getting cold;
When the squirrels hide their acorns,
And the woodchucks disappear;
Then we know that it is autumn,
Loveliest season of the year.
-Carol L. Riser
I thought about going out and trying to capture fog this morning but after looking at the thermometer I decided I would rather not. So, I spent half the day working on this attempt to emulate an art piece in one of my Photoshop artistry lessons. I don’t think I quite captured the technique but I still think it has potential. Just need a little more practice.
“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.”
― Leonardo da Vinci
One of the challenges in a project like this is getting to day 67 or 78 or 93 and not repeating yourself. There are after all a finite number of subjects. Though there are an infinite number of ways to treat them. I almost threw this image out because it was a little overexposed but I really liked the blend of colors so decided to play with it in Photoshop and came up with something I at least liked better. I was thinking to find a poem about art or creativity but was not successful. However, I think this quote from Leonardo says it all.
And November goes
With the last red berries
And the first white snows,
With night coming early
And dawn coming late,
And ice in the bucket
And frost by the gate.
The fires burn
And the kettles sing,
And earth sinks to rest
Until next spring.
I have to say I have been trying for, well, 65 days to find the right combination of weather and opportunity to get over to the Applegate Valley to photograph. I did find some good fall color today. Though the wineries were definitely past prime, the big leaf maples were quite showy. I ended up with nearly 100 images so you may see more from this trip down the road. I wouldn’t mind going back either. No one seems to be writing poems about big leaf maples but I like this one about November.
Flowers in a Vase
A bunch of flowers
Sat in a vase
Colourful and lonely
A mind looks at them
What is it they have to say
Are they a thank you
Or a gift of love
Are they an apology
Or given in remorse
Perhaps they are for nothing
Given to bring a smile
The mind looks on
Wondering for a while
The flowers sit in their vase
Unmoved by thought
Or the reason given to them
A little water at their base
To keep them fresh for a while
They are the end of the day
Just flowers in a vase
Another busy rainy day. So I took the flowers I bought yesterday into the studio and played for awhile this morning. Then took the results into photoshop and added some textures and french ledger script for visual interest. All in all I think it worked out pretty well. And though it is only one flower in a bottle I thought searching for flowers in a vase might be more productive, and so it was.
The Button Tin
Memories of the cracker tin
My Mother kept her buttons in
Such treasures beautiful and bright
That brought my childish heart delight
I don’t know where the time has gone
My Mother’s race is nearly run
The buttons now seem so passe
Who’d want to use them anyway?
Red buttons, blue and green and white
Are seldom ever brought to light.
But I can still remember when
I loved my Mother’s button tin.
I borrowed my Mother’s button tin some time ago with the intent of photographing it’s contents. She never asked for it back so I thought I might just keep it since she doesn’t sew anymore. The weather finally drove me to find something inside to photograph so I finally opened the button tin and found the buttons not nearly as intriguing as I remembered them. But I went ahead and photographed them and then I spent quite a bit of time working it into an art piece. Then I went looking for a poem and could find nothing suitable. I couldn’t quite fit what I had to say into a Haiku so I had to write a full blown poem. Not that great I know and how gauche to actually rhyme the lines. But I like it. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
My Wooden Spoon
When your soup comes to a boil
and starts frothing,
You should place a wooden spoon
atop the pot
to keep the contents
from spilling over.
Alas, i must leave you here,
as i’m going to the kitchen
to clean the stove.
Yep, I was getting desperate for something to photograph and for a poem to go with it. It wasn’t fit for woman or beast outside today so I decided to find something in the house to photograph. This jar of wooden spoons caught my eye but by the time I got around to photographing it I wasn’t really in the mood. But with a little help from my creative software I came up with something. The poem on the other had didn’t do too much for me until I thought it through and then it made me laugh so it got the nod even if the author apparently didn’t want to claim it.
The Presence of Trees
I have always felt the living presence
the forest that calls to me as deeply
as I breathe,
as though the woods were marrow of my bone
I myself were tree, a breathing, reaching
arc of the larger canopy
beside a brook bubbling to foam
like the one
deep in these woods,
that whispers home
-Michael S. Glaser
Not feeling quite up to par today so I decided to create art from the files. This started as an intentional blur shot in Lithia Park where there is a grove of trees all planted in neat rows. I layered on some textures to give it a little more interest and depth.
Buddha in Glory
Center of all centers, core of cores,
almond self-enclosed, and growing sweet–
all this universe, to the furthest stars
all beyond them, is your flesh, your fruit.
Now you feel how nothing clings to you;
your vast shell reaches into endless space,
and there the rich, thick fluids rise and flow.
Illuminated in your infinite peace,
a billion stars go spinning through the night,
blazing high above your head.
But in you is the presence that
will be, when all the stars are dead.
-Rainer Maria Rilke
I have to confess, I am not much of a fan of Halloween. But, since those of you who subscribe to my blog will get this tomorrow, I thought, well alright I will take a walk around the neighborhood and see what I can find to do a tribute to Halloween. Well, yes, there were a few jack-o-lanterns, ghosts and skeletons. But the most interesting things to me were this statuette of Buddha and this sunflower. So I decided to just go with it and create an art piece from them. And soon Halloween will be behind us. Fred Meyer was already putting out Christmas stuff in it’s place this morning. Sigh.