… on… the macro verse….

I’ve long been fascinated with macro photography.  It’s so hard to do it right.  And I’m usually too lazy to carry a tripod around so I’ve never really bothered.   But lately, as my previous post shows.  I’ve started getting into the so-called groove of close-up and macro imaging.    I still don’t use a tripod – all handheld – so the number of useable images are limited.

This morning was a beautiful frosty December morning and I decided to go to a local park close to downtown and only about 5 minutes from my apartment.   Here are two of the images I was able to use from this morning along with two new haiku.  Hope you enjoy them.

Les Bébés Congelés

Frosty mornings
Inhale a crispy frozen breath
I gasp, in love

Whiplash wind storm
When I am lost you bend me back
See what’s behind

Whiplash Bend

The music moment is provided by the Tindersticks.    Their song FROZEN from their recent album – The Something Rain.

… on… a thousand fading stars….

Night comes darkly
Bringer of dreams and nightmares
Floating in space

A Thousand Fading Stars

Flash of excitement
A thousand stars fading from view
Dreamers wake to light

Your music moment is by Mazzy Star – FADE INTO YOU
from their 1993 album So Tonight That I Might See.

… on… knock, knock….

Behind caged bars
restless heart, fearful mind
murmurs of changeKnock Knock

This image is one of the not-so-hidden spaces in downtown Akron.   Just on the other side of this building is South Main St.   And it is adjacent to the Akron Civic Theater.   This entire area has been under a slow renovation for several years.  Just behind me is the popular LOCK 4 of the canal which runs through this area. It is already repurposed as a wonderful outdoor entertainment space with live jazz, blues and gospel over the warmer months.  When I peered though the windows on South Main and between the bars through the cracks in the plywood I did see construction lighting and various clean-up tools as if this structure is under renovation.   I just hope they  don’t tear it down like they’ve done other historic buildings downtown.

Your musical moment to help digest this post is provided by FORQ (yep it’s pronounced fork). The track is titled THE HARD WAY from their self-titled album.

… on… lessons in rust….

Hello again everyone.   As many of you know I have a preoccupation with the subject of rust in my photos.   More than a few of my photos feature rust in some form.  Today is no different.   I’ve been thinking about why I find rust to be such a dynamic subject.   Part of it is (as I’ve written on my previous blog) the Wabi-Sabi aesthetic;  Finding beauty in the imperfect, the flawed and discarded.   But it also goes beyond that.   I think rust has many lessons to teach us.  No only about the inevitable end of all things but also how we can come to terms with the inevitable end.   Rust is strong.   It’s strength does not lie in speed, or the forceful blow to its subject.  Rust is gentle.  It does not seek to hide – it is visible in its destruction.  Rust takes it’s time; the object of its affection is coaxed into its corrosive embrace.

The Way Out Is Through

You and me like all things must end.   It is the nature of things.  We are mortal.  That means we will not live forever no matter how hard we try to extend the time we have.   I don’t care how fit you are, how free of disease you have been, your physical fitness, or your emotional health.   You will die.  In fact, you might say you are already dying.  And that’s okay.   There is beauty in the process.   What?  Yes, there is beauty in the process of dying = it’s all in how you look at it.   You can approach it with grace and appreciation for the time you have and the inevitable end or you can fight it every single step of the way.   I once heard a woman say, “I do not plan to grow old gracefully, I plan to fight it every step of the way”.   I’ve always found that viewpoint rather tragic.  But that is the prevailing viewpoint in western society.  In fact the exception in western culture is that you must fight it and with medical and technological advances you can fight aging, disease etc.  But that is all a delusion.  In the west we have become masters of delusion and self-deception.

Why do we find Autumn to be one of the most beautiful times of the year?  Autumn is the season of dying.   The leaves on trees are the most colorful just before they die and fall to the ground.   And this change seems to happen rather fast but the change actually started  at the point the leaf first came out and reached maturity on its branch back in the Spring.  Our lives are the same way.    It’s not just the newborn and young that are beautiful.   Beauty is enhanced through experiences that are both good and bad.   Rust is like that; it is one of those experiences that may seem to hasten the demise of something but it does not know that.   It just is.   It is a part of nature.  A part of life experience just like disease, physical and emotional discomfort.   Those things exist to add to our beauty.

Catacombs In Rust

You find me
Slowly you Change my life
I love you

**************

I feel your presence
your corrosion adds beauty
glory of Autumn

**************

Your rough embrace
Enhances my life through change
I welcome you

**************

The color of love
Textures the smooth beauty of life
Open arms tremble

**************

Sing a song of rust
A slow ballad of decay
Autumns dying love

***************

Sound of slow scraping
Crippled dry dusty fingers
Wabi-Sabi world

****************

Illusions of age
You teach strength through weakness
Beauty in Frailty

Face The Colour Of Your Fears

Your music moment provided by a band I recently discovered and had to buy all their albums – Do Make Say Think – A TENDER HISTORY IN RUST from their album You, You’re A History In Rust.

Album version


Alternate version

****Hey!  if you have short form poem or haiku about rust and the ideas I’ve written about, please feel free to post in your comment.  😉

… on… autumn compositions….

Dream a little dream
Live a large life full of love
Die with grace and peace

Pollock Inspired Nature

New blooms in spring
a carnival of life takes flight
Autumn sees it die

River Runs Through It

Grace to suffer
One season flows into another
Life without end

*****todays music moment features Syd Arthur This English band from Canterbury are often described as psychedelic jazz but I think it’s got more of a progressive rock feel.  The band’s name is from Hermann Hesse’s 1922 novel – Siddhartha.  Phonetically similar to Siddhartha the changed spelling to Syd Arthur is a nod to the bands primary influences of Syd Barrett and Arthur Lee.  This track is INTO ETERNITY from their 4th album APRICITY.   Enjoy.

… on… structuring the dawn….

Eyes dim with sleep
Waking from dreams, slowly open
Structuring the dawn

Structuring Dawn

Night blurs into day
Colors and shapes come into focus
Morning clings to light

***The following music moment is from one of my favorite new albums A COMMON TRUTH by Saltland – which is the genius of Canadian composer and musician Rebecca Foon.  Her previous projects include the groups Esmerine and Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra – all on Constellation Records.

Saltland – LIGHT OF MERCY

… on… 3 new haiku attempts….

Squirrel sky highways
wires crossed to connect
away from the road

Pursuit Of Nothingness

Autumn breathes In Moods
Warm days, cool nights and waterfalls
Time dreaming TWIN PEAKS

Concretism

Driving brings limits
Destinations form in the soul
Spirits need no roads

 

… on… signs of autumn….

No Access

Leaves are Falling

Swimsuits exchanged for flannels

Signs of Autumn

I’ve been a fan of composer, musician Jia Peng Fang (Chinese: 賈鵬芳)
for years. He’s from China and plays a traditional folk instrument called the Erhu (Chinese: 二胡). I find the mournful sound soothing as the Summer drifts quietly and slowly into the sunset and Autumn rises in the cool crisp morning. May this new season bring many blessings to all who read this.

http://www.jia-pengfang.com

***fyi – Artist website is very interesting with great pictures, videos etc –  but only language options are Chinese or Japanese – however, you don’t need to understand the spoke/written language to understand the language of beautiful music – so check it out. 

… on… wisdom….

Maya Angelou has been one of my favorite poets for quite a long time.   I recently came across these videos of her expressing wisdom that we can all put into practice.

and two of her poems…

… on… a river of love….

River Of Love

There’s a river of love that runs through all time
But there’s a river of grief that floods through our lives
It starts when a heart is broken into
By the thief of belief in anything that’s true
But there’s a river of love that runs through all time

There’s a river of love that runs through all time
But there’s a river of tears that flows through our eyes
We fight through the night for freedom as it fades
Into a jail where we fail everytime we make a break
But there’s a river of love that runs through all time

I had to run before I knew how to crawl
The first step was hard
But I have had trouble with them all
But now the night grows darker
And the day grows dim
Cause I know I never will see you again
And I almost made you happy

There’s a river of love that runs through all time
But there’s a river of fire that burns with no light
The flame is the pain of dreams gone up in smoke
From the lies we deny and breathe until we choke
There’s a river of love that runs through all time

~T-Bone Burnett

… on… windows & walls….

2010 Wallscape

Sometimes life is ALL walls & windows… no doors.
But it is still life.
And in my confinement I found contentment.

Quietly sitting in the center
To weak to climb the walls
I found a shovel and started to dig instead.

My contentment brought enlightenment
and opportunity… my sight was more
than any window could afford.

~ mobius faith (Akron,OH 8/5/17

… on…swallows play….

 

Field For Swallows Play

Field For Swallows Play

Where have all the swallows gone?
wings clipped
caged spirits
songs silenced
ghosts of freedom

murmurations
of grace and dignity
gone gone gone
hiding in dark shelters

feathers tremble
hearts quiver
waiting for the noisy,
angry hunter to leave

fire burns the fields
arrogance tears down shelters
bringer of death
the enslaver comes with a mocking grin
noisily waving a flag

… on… the wasteland….

“What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow

Out of this stony rubbish? Son of man,

You cannot say, or guess, for you know only

A heap of broken images, where the sun beats,

And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief,

And the dry stone no sound of water. Only

There is shadow under this red rock,

(Come in under the shadow of this red rock),

And I will show you something different from either

Your shadow at morning striding behind you

Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;

I will show you fear in a handful of dust.”

~ T.S. Eliot
Wasteland #1

WASTELAND #1

…on quantity…

Quantity of life
Inexorable memories
Breathing
Seeing
Feeling

Your touch
Body close
Warmth like the sun
Love radiates

Whispers
A breeze lilting
fluttering leaves
My heart

May it only end in old age
The passing of you or me
When flesh grows cold
Memories warm forever

…on… nowhere

EXIT TO NOWHERE
Exit To Nowhere smlr

Where is Nowhere?
Can you take me there?
Will others welcome me?

What will it look like?
Will it be someplace just like here?
Will I be entering a place everyone else is trying to leave?

Is there a road to nowhere?
Is there a train to nowhere?
Is there a door to nowhere?

Nowhere is home
Somewhere is always someplace else
The elusive “other”

Always going and never arriving
Living the dream
While ignoring reality

White line fever
Tracks of our tears
Knocking on the doors of opportunity never to be opened.

We have taken the exit and are now here.

…frail attempts…

FOR THE TREES

eyes brighten
morning sky wakes
jasmine tea

>>>>>>>>

meditations
yesterdays flowers are dead
dry fire burning

<<<<<<<<

shattered reflections
fish jumping through surface
new reality

A memory…

I’ve been reading  SEEDTIME, writings from the notebooks of Swiss poet Phillipe Jaccotet. His writings about the swiss countryside bring back so many memories. Memories of growing up on the farm near Kidron, OH (USA) So here are some thoughts of my own:

Murmured Lowing. Distant cowbells. Waking sparrow.
The light is dark at dawn.

Blue-black sky. Green-black landscape. Summer morning.
Fence post sentinels line the pasture lane.

Early to bed, early to rise. Morning chores beckon. Lids heavy slow response.
The bed is warmest when waking.

My Grandfather used to make trips to Switzerland our ancestral homeland and in 1948 he had a set of cowbells made that covered at least two octaves on the western musical scale. Here is an image of one of our family’s cowbells that I’ve been able to salvage. Not sure what happened to the rest. Bells were cast in Bronze, included the family name (Geiser), date (1948), image of a cow and decorative Edelweiss flowers, the text “Made in Switzerland” and name of the foundry where bell was cast (Barinotto Co. Fonderie La Chaux De Fonds)
bell smlr

And what do cowbells sound like? What sound became so familiar to me during summer?
(fyi – there is a 20 second gap in sound near the beginning).

Perception, Knowledge & Ability

“Poetry. The better you understand how it should be done,
the less you are able to write it.
Virtuosity comes with the void.”

~ Philippe Jaccottet

…and I have found this true of all things in my life, whether at work or play. My study of music theory destroyed my ability to perform. My study of Theatre disabled my ability to act. My beginning studies of art history nearly destroyed my ability to see & create. All have blinded me to the possibilities outside of limitations. In the “void” I was free. But the muse of creativity is fickle; for some, she inspires through seeing while others she inspires through blindness. How can anyone say, “There is ONE way?”

Values

WHAT VALUES

Who co-opted our values
Who changed the primary meaning of the word
Who dared to stare at the face of God
and say, “Who are you?”
and, “How much?”

When did values change to only mean
deal
sale
cheap
bargain

When did the noun co-opt the verb

Will we ever be able to recover
prize
cherish
appreciate
those things
which cannot be defined
by material value

Maybe some day
it will be an innocent child
who recovers the truth
and once again
focuses and directs
away from materialism
the values of humanity
breathing new life
into old meanings

This morning…

7AM ONE JUNE MORNING

The muffled sun
A quiet hum of tires on pavement
Sleepy twittering of the waking sparrow
Mournful train whistle in the distance
And Discreet Music by Brian Eno on the stereo.
The day comes alive in the city.

A Christmas Prayer

Lord God,

Father in Heaven

Thank you for this day

Today we celebrate the birth of Jesus of Nazareth

A man who would be, and did, become Messiah

The hope of all Israel and all of humanity

A man who taught, and showed us,

That we CAN have a relationship directly with you.

In this way he was the door, the gate,

Through which your spirit that dwells within us

Has been awakened.

We thank you for this awakening that removes all Hindrance

Even if that separation is political, social, religious

And now we thank you for this meal

And time of togetherness between family and friends

We bless this meal in the name of Jesus

That it may give us physical strength and stamina

We bless you that you may give us the mental and spiritual  strength and stamina

To be a blessing to others we come in contact with;

Removing all wrong perceptions

In Jesus name, Amen.

I believe the best prayers are not prayers of thanks and requests (or to use consumerism terms – supply and demand).  The best prayers are when we pray what we believe – not what we want or hope for.   For example when we pray the Lords prayer do we hope these things are true that are mentioned OR do we really believe them?  And how do we believe them?

Maybe some day I’ll dissect and expound on the Lords prayer specifically.

But for now – Merry Christmas everyone.  Enjoy one of my favorite Christmas songs.

When the Crows Awoke

I was there when the crows awoke
I’d seen them the night before
Flocking to nearby trees
Under cover of night
A whole murder of crows
Ominous shadows filling up tree branches
As if the trees were in full bloom
Large black blossoms
Shimmering with city light
In the winter’s night air

Now at daybreak
I was there when the crows awoke
Their cawing and chattering so loud
Drowning out the sounds of morning rush hour
…and then…
With excited whispering wings
took flight and were gone
Only the rumble and buzz of morning traffic remains.

***background: I live in the city. And we have a lot of old trees still standing. Of course all the leaves are gone now. I was watching an old silent movie on TV and out of the corner of my eye saw perpetual shadows flickering past my windows. Finally my curiosity got the best of me. I went to the windows and saw the trees filled with hundreds of crows… their arrival continued for at least a couple of hours. Of course I didn’t think to move my car which, although not directly under the trees was close enough for the birds to leave their “mark”. When I went out to my little blue car in the morning it looked like a Jackson Pollock painting with streaks, smears, splats and lines of crow droppings in white, yellow and brown as well as small twigs that had fallen from the trees. What a mess. All-n-all it was a magical experience and worth a trip to the car wash. 🙂

while at the hospital – 2 poems

Two poems while spending time in the hospital with Dad.

**************************************************

He

standing by the mirror
face unknown
memory of youth
now
naked
frail
weakened

memory of showers
remembrance of shaving
smooth skin
now
wrinkled
unsteady
dry

now there is trouble, shaving a chore
nothing is comfortable
and all you can do is wait
now
tests
results
hope

~ 10/13/14 Aultman Hospital, Canton, OH.

*****************************************************************

old skin hangs on old bones
through the back of a hospital gown
the time is slow
caution steps
one day at a time
ice cream melting in the sun
life is still present
but changed
my love is still present
but changed
a time of fast questions
slow answers
and wonder

~ 10/13/14 Aultman Hospital, Canton, OH.

*******************************************

If blood will flow when flesh and steel are one
Drying in the colour of the evening sun
Tomorrow’s rain will wash the stains away
But something in our minds will always stay
Perhaps this final act was meant
To clinch a lifetime’s argument
That nothing comes from violence and nothing ever could
For all those born beneath an angry star
Lest we forget how fragile we are

On and on the rain will fall
Like tears from a star like tears from a star
On and on the rain will say
How fragile we are how fragile we are

On and on the rain will fall
Like tears from a star like tears from a star
On and on the rain will say
How fragile we are how fragile we are
How fragile we are how fragile we are

Silence…IS…Golden

The video today is for a great girl band called Savages with their song “SHUT UP” from their debut album SILENCE YOURSELF.  This group “gets it”    Amazing lyrics and the spoken word introduction of the cover poetry is simply amazing!!! There is almost a Taoist feel to this.

Introduction
The world used to be silent
Now it has too many voices
And the noise
Is a constant distraction
They multiply, intensify
They will divert your attention
To What’s convenient
And forget to tell you
About yourself
We live in an age of many stimulations
If you are focused you are harder to reach
If you are distracted
You are available
You are distracted
You are available
You want flattery
Always looking to where it’s at
You want to take part in everything
And everything to be a part of you
Your head is spinning fast
At the end of your spine
Until you have no face at all
And yet
If the world would shut up
Even for a while
Perhaps
We would start hearing
A distant rhythm
Of an angry young tune –
And recompose ourselves
Perhaps
Having deconstructed everything
We should be thinking
Putting everything back together
Silence yourself

 

SHUT UP

TOO MANY TO CONVINCE
TOO MANY TO HIRE
AND NOTHING YOU EVER OWN
THE WORLD’S A DEAD SORRY HOLE
AND I’M COLD, AND I’M COLD
AND IM COLD, AND I’M STUBBORN
I’M SICK TO KEEP IT OPEN WIDE
AND SPEAKING WORDS TO THE BLIND

SPEAKING WORDS, TO THE BLIND
SPEAKING WORDS, TO THE BLIND

AND THE SOUL OF THE PURE
AND THE EYES OF THE LOVER
AND THE ONE WHO TRULY SAW YOUR SOUL
AND THE ONE WHO TRULY SAW YOUR SOUL

I’M THE ONE, WHO TRULY SAW YOUR SOUL
I’M THE ONE, WHO TRULY SAW YOUR SOUL

AND IF YOU TELL ME TO SHUT UP
AND IF YOU TELL ME TO SHUT IT
DID YOU TELL ME TO SHUT UP
OH IF YOU TELL ME TO SHUT IT
I’LL SHUT IT NOW

YOUNG, JUST BORN
FRAGILE AND TREMBLING SOUL
YOU HOLD IT TO THE LIGHT
THAT POURS DOWN THE MOON AT NIGHT
YOU KEPT ON HOLDING IT
YOU KEPT ON HOLDING IT
IT WAS A DANGEROUS THING TO DO
BUT YOU DID IT WHEN NO ONE KNEW
WHEN THE EYES WERE CLOSED
AND THE PEOPLE ASLEEP

NOT AN ANIMAL
NOT A HUMAN
NOT A SOUL
NOT A SOUL

AND IF YOU TELL ME TO SHUT UP
AND IF YOU TELL ME TO SHUT IT
DID YOU TELL ME TO SHUT UP
OH IF YOU TELL ME TO SHUT IT
I SHUT IT NOW

I AM A BREAKER OF OCEAN
LEADEN LIKE A BULLET TO THE SUN

I AM A BREAKER OF OCEAN
LEADEN LIKE A BULLET TO THE SUN, TO THE SUN, TO THE SUN…

FCK the Beliefs

Saul Williams is one of the finest poets of our time.   Urban prophet, wordsmith, actor and musician.

FCK THE BELIEFS – Saul Williams from Saul Williams on Vimeo.