Saturday, February 14, 2009

February 14, 2009

This Year's Valentine

They could
pump frenzy into air ducts
and rage into reservoirs,
dynamite dams 
and drown the cities,
cry fire in theaters
as the victims are burning,
but
I will find my way through the blackened streets
and kneel down at your side.
They could
jump the median, head-on,
and obliterate the future,
fit 45's to the hands of kids
and skate them off to school,
flip live butts onto tinderbox forests
and hellfire half the heavens,
but
in the rubble of smoking cottages
I will hold you in my arms.

They could 
send kidnappers to kindergartens
and pedophiles to playgrounds,
wrap themselves in Old Glory
and gut the Bill of Rights,
pound at the door with holy screed
and put an end to reason,
but
I will cut through their curtains of cunning
and find you somewhere in the moonlight.

Whatever they do with their anthrax or chainsaws,
however they strip search or brainwash or blackmail,
They cannot prevent me from sending you robins,
all of them singing, I'll be there.

Phillip Appleman

3 comments:

Linda Moran said...

Powerful image, powerful words - this is one that I will remember.

Jackie said...

How fortunate we are to know love! Thank you for an incredible poem and the perfect photo to accompany it. Happy Valentine's Day!

Anonymous said...

Powerfully visual images -- thank you, Jane. Happy Birthday, by the way!

Diane S.

November 20, 2008

November 20, 2008

November 20, 2008

How does color set a mood? The soft gray and white of the carpet, the cat Marshall, and the sunlit window contribute to to the sense of calm repose. What does blue mean to you or me? We all have symbolic associations for colors; some based on personal experience and some instilled culturally. 

The cobalt blue of the vase provides a point and counterpoint to the composition, in addition to providing elements that balance.
Keeping the cat in the lower third of the composition weights the image and is another visual door into the picture world.

November 19, 2008

November 19, 2008

November 19, 2008

This picture tells several stories. It references the human desire to order the world around us - the lettering on the wall establishes the alley as a No Parking zone, and the broken glass-  jutting out at the top - is another message of fear and frailty. Whoever lives behind this wall wants to be left alone.

But there is beauty in the contrast of the rough brick surface and the smooth translucency of the broken glass bottles. A contrast of textures makes for an interesting composition. And the abstract nature of the printed letters against the structure of the bricks would be worth emulating in another sort of composition.

There is as much beauty in decay as there is in a bouquet of fresh flowers. And aren't decay and fresh growth just two different spots on the same continuum?



November 18, 2008

November 18, 2008

November 18, 2008

The Hydrangeas offer a lesson in the effective use of color. The pale blue and lavender are roughly the same value, so they balance each other beautifully. I am challenged to mimic that combination of analogous colors on silk Habotai!

This photograph would be considered beautiful even without the red-orange and yellow flowers at the bottom. But the addition of the complements to the blue and purple creates a focal point and generates some nice contrast because of the complementary pairing. And imagine how different this composition would be, were the red-orange and yellow at the top instead of at the bottom. The current placement adds important visual weight.

November 17, 2008

November 17, 2008

November 16, 2008

November 16, 2008
Being and Non-being

Substance and Light

November 16, 2008

We join spokes together in a wheel,
but it is the center hole
that makes the wagon move.

We shape clay into a pot,
but it is the emptiness inside 
that holds whatever we want.

We hammer wood for a house,
but it is the space inside
that holds whatever we want.

We work with being,
but non-being is what we use.

Tao te Ching; Verse 11
Stephen Mitchell translation