Sunday, July 18, 2010

Nature's Infinite Book of Secrecy

In nature's infinite book of secrecy
A little I can read.

-- William Shakespeare, The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra (Act I, Scene ii.)
The Soothsayer's words

Apparently, I keep reading the same passages over and over in nature's infinite book. Every summer I take countless photos of the wine berries on my road, gorgeous in color and texture at every stage of development. I never tire of those multi-hued jewels that emerge from the purple-whiskered casings. I keep coming back to the crimson, orange and chartreuse of the ripening berries, glittering against the green foliage.

The picture was taken on the 4th of July this year, uphill from my house. Click on the photo to enlarge the image.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Box of Green Light

There were plenty of twinkling lights at my cousin's graduation party, but there, in the shadows of the garage: a box of green light, glowing like a treasure chest of kryptonite. In reality, it was a cardboard box of glow sticks and glow toys. One of the youngest cousins shared my delight at discovering this container of celebratory light. Inspired, he quickly and decisively selected pieces from the collection to create a bold and clean design on the floor. It looked like a neon hieroglyph. Then he wanted to photograph it. At eight, what an eye! I loved observing the young soul of an artist, glowing.

An artist observes, selects, guesses and synthesizes.

-- Anton Pavlovich Chekhov, from a letter to A. S. Suvorin, October 27, 1888

Click on the photographs to enlarge the images.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Spathe, Scratched Light

Spathe? No, that's not what it really is. I don't want to erase the mystery and atmosphere of this photograph by revealing the subjects. (Perhaps you have a suggestion or inspiration?) I took the picture this afternoon, found this shrunken world while playing with light and elusive reflections. To enter, click on image, lean forward, and disobey gravity.

What is called a sincere work is one that is endowed with enough strength to give reality to an illusion.

-- Max Jacob (1876-1944), Art Poetique

Thursday, July 1, 2010

They Seek an Inky Elixir

Okay, I know this is an unfocused photo, but it's got its own fuzzy-dreamy energy, and I like it. It throws you off for a split second, until you realize the moth is clinging to the kitchen window, not floating. It's a bit unsettling the way the moth stares inside, directly into your eyes. Watching you. Odd, how you have the inclination to stare back. To be absolutely still and silent. I found this picture while searching through my photos for a match to a prose poem of mine, "They Seek an Inky Elixir." The prose poem was just published in the summer issue of Cerise Press, a fascinating literary magazine, along with "My Flickering Body," a lyric poem.

Here's the beginning of "They Seek an Inky Elixir":


Poems cling to the trees in the dark, glowing like white bandages. They have traveled unimaginable distances, arriving in flocks from all directions. Windblown, tattered, they are exhausted from flying. They are half-dead from endlessly circling human heads, searching for an entrance to those moist and dreaming brains. All but a few have failed to do so.

The sound of the poems settling is a many-voiced hiss. Here, in the thickest part of the woods, they cover every trunk and branch. Their thirst is terrible. Sticky and breathless, they seek an inky elixir drawn by roots from the underworld. They crave that earthy flavor, the taste of clay and rust. Their unfurled tongues bore into the sapwood.

In an earlier life, they gathered in the crowns of trees and chewed. Now, in their fullness, graced with wings, they desire only that which flows. The words they seek have nothing to do with sunlight and chartreuse leaves. They wriggle deeper between the shingles of bark. All night long they siphon what they need from the trees. They greedily swallow cold shadows ....

--continued in Cerise Press--

To finish reading this piece, click on the title (in bold, above) to be transported to Cerise Press. You will also find "My Flickering Body" there. Here is the first section:


Unwrap the silt-blanketed stone
at the bottom of your heart.

Reveal yourself.

Dredge the pond.

Find your other body.

Bring her back to the surface,
where the bobbing copper sun
will balance again
like a penny on her lips.

The water is covered with weightless coins:
copper, gold, silver, bronze –

She keeps her eyes pinched tight.

Shake her awake.

For a moment,
there is no one inside the body.
The body is mere reminder,
receptacle for the lost stone,
the stone that skipped across the mirror
in defiance of gravity,
then finally obeyed.

--continued on Cerise Press--

Again, to read the rest of the poem, just click on the title in bold above. Thanks to the fine editors of Cerise Press for including my poetry. I'm honored. Do visit the summer issue online to savor an impressive assortment of writing and art.

The photo was taken from my kitchen, a couple of years ago. Click on the photo to enlarge the image.