Tarmac ribbons criss-crossing the landscape, dusty back roads twisting between the cool shadows of ancient pines, and less traveled pathways connecting present to past, all I wander, seeking, seeing, with my keyboard and camera capturing scenes and stories to share with you.

Now in its fifth year, this venue has become an important part of my life, a place where I can express my thoughts and feelings about the things I see and do, hoping the process brings me a bit closer to friends and family who enjoy sharing my sometimes chaotic and often nonlinear observations and ideas. A journal, I suppose, but one with which I find pleasure in thinking others are alongside me on my journey.

December 17, 2015

POET EXTRAORDINAIRE

... this fall ellen asked, "what do you think of me sponsoring richard blanco, the inaugural poet, to speak at the opera house" ... my response was a simple, "go for it" ... of course, her next question needed not be asked, and i ended up being privileged to photograph the event ...

... we began the day at winslow junior high, where richard intertwined verse with his personal narrative, of which only a part was being chosen to deliver one of his poems at the inauguration of the president of the united states ... i was impressed with the honesty of his straightforward speaking style ...

... and, twenty-eight years experience, i knew to be impressed with the audience ...
 

... early in the evening at "the last unicorn" i shared supper with richard, which, as far as i'm concerned, was one of the best perks ever brought to me because i can look like i know what i'm doing with a camera ... later, a wonderful crowd filled the floor seats and even some of the balcony at the opera house ...

... using my fuji x-t1 for the first time in a "pressure" situation such as this, i began to come to an even greater appreciation of its low-light capabilities ...

... again, as i had discovered at the junior high, watching and listening to richard it was most difficult for me to remain in a "professional" frame of mind ... helpful was the fact that the marvelous x-t1 combined with my "new" thirty-year old lenses functioned in perfect partnership with my eyes ... and, especially in a situation such as this, it was a joy to use a camera that was almost as quiet as my old leica m3 (if you've ever used one of those classic gems you'll know what i'm talking about) ...

"My face, your face, millions of faces in morning's mirrors, 
      

... each one yawning to life, crescendoing into our day."
      

 ... in the darkened chamber the poet spoke softly to an audience entranced, until from the oft repaired and repainted walls of the aged structure came a quiet sigh, "this—this is why i was constructed, this is why i've lasted" ... and none, for sure not i, could  discern where speech ended and poetry began ...
 

... it is rare, very, very rare, for me to say this, but richard's words, both prose and verse, within my own soul they rest perfectly ...



... standing across the street from a little house in alaska, leaning on an old rickety fence gate in nebraska, wrapping myself against the brisk sea breeze at point judith, sitting at the edge of the world on gram's beach and letting the warm caribbean sea tickle my toes with sand, yes, i too—

I want to find The Gulf Motel exactly as it was
and pretend for a moment, nothing lost is lost.

... to stop looking, i believe, that is the only way we can lose the past—and, i suppose, one another, too ... thank you, richard, for the reminder ...