It’s a sultry morning here in Maine: the kind that might make you think you were in Antigua waiting for an early morning coffee on the porch of a house overlooking English Bay and around you were the remnants of a late night party with one pale pink sandal cast off in the corner. You walk to the edge of the porch and gaze out over the bay and you notice you are alone. I wonder if one notices the beauty of a place when one is not alone? I wonder if the edge of night that has merged into the light of day would go unspoken about The warm breezes that could so easily be drying the sweet mornings of love makings in other houses would not be felt as poignantly if one were with another. The makings of a dream would be lost in other lost recipes and flour, butter and eggs would be cast aside to be forgotten. Breakfast should always be bacon no matter where in the world you are and those that say otherwise have no knowledge of what life is. Even British bacon has its merits and the smell alone is enough to bring you into nursery dreams of cream merging with stories that always end happily.There are spirits here on North Haven visiting me nightly: having asked for years what it is they cry for now I give them up. There are a few plaintive midnight cries but for the most part I am alone and peaceful. How many moments like this will I have until the next life, I wonder? I spent last night with my friend, Violet, who is 89. We went to a local wine tasting and she decided half way through the event to pour all the little bits of wine from her 5 glasses into one so she could enjoy it! Isn’t that the best idea? Kindove like what we should be doing in life!
There must be another word to describe silence as here in Maine it is so much more profound that “silence”. Listen to the silence and you hear the soft, round roar to the lobster boat hauling traps a few islands away. Or maybe the loon crying because he is happy to have discovered a bit of fish in his glistening dive under the water in the quiet cove. Wait a minute while still listening to the air around you and there will be another echo of a boat engine and then the greedy gull calling back to you. When the wind starts up right after lunch the pines play an arpeggio of beaten drum notes lulling you into a nap of sweet summer dreams. Imagine tangy pine and sticky ginger drifting under your nose and then suddenly, some rock salt in water with sprits of sea mud thrown in for good measure. At night when lying between air dried summers sheets you ask the Indian ghosts to stay above you and you tell them you are sorry. Ask for the blessing of sweet Venus and for the grace of the moon so your sleep will be safe all night. When it is morning try to stay as still as invisible in your bed and refuse to start the inhalation of the morning.
ODE TO A PALM TREE
Without the rustle of a palm tree
One might lose the journey
Provided so willingly and cheaply
By the slap of a limb against the window
And the after waves of sound
Like a skipping stone
There is a beach
and the scent of Frangipani brushing your hair.
Notes from London…
I found my castle but its edible and in a store window in London. Oh Well! London is weird at the moment as everyone is waiting for the other shoe to drop. Cab drivers are weirdly angry and yet life goes on. Last night a friend stopped a cab for me which didn’t look like a cab to me as it wasn’t black. My friend assured me it was legitimate yet when we asked the driver if he knew our hotel, he said he didn’t. I backed away at this point and said I would wait for another cab. The driver began yelling at me saying he was perfectly capable of figuring it out. I repeated I wasn’t comfortable riding with him and he then became irate and yelled he wasn’t comfortable riding with me. All in all, it was a ridiculous example of a crazy person’s behavior. My friend asked me how I had known not to get in the cab. I said I was lucky and always had an angel who warned me of such people. I hope I always do.
Anyway everyone is angry these days. It is hard to stay on track and keep calm and centered. I am heavily involved in love at the moment as we are in the heart chakra part of our weekly chakra class. I keep focusing on looking for love rather than loving which is a very specific behavior. Every time I wonder what it would be like to have a significant other in life I have to stop and remember that I need to look for ways to spread love in the world rather than looking for it. Actually this behavior is much more positive than the former one. I find I have lived alone for so long I wonder all the time if there is space for someone
Why oh why do people think the world should smell them? Honestly! I don’t understand it! Wearing perfume so strong that it wafts through a room after a person is really unattractive. I think it is like those in cars who blare their music to the world. You know those cars, they stop by you at stop lights and if your window is open you have to immediately close it before your ears hurt. That is offensive as well but of shorter duration.
Last night I went to the theater with a friend and there were women all around us wearing really strong perfume. What do these women think before they go out? “Let’s see how much perfume I can spray on myself so the entire theater will be able to smell me?”
After about 15 minutes of this overwhelming cacophony of smells I had a bad headache and would have liked to leave but I was interested in the play.
Please ladies and gentlemen: leave your perfume and aftershave at home. Learn to be subtle with it. Brad Pitt once said “You shouldn’t be able to smell a woman’s perfume unless you were kissing her.”
Now that’s a great comment on life!
so I met this guy in Madrid and asked if I could take his picture. He smiled as if he did this all the time and posed against his car. I really liked this guy as he was so comfortable with himself. He lived in a town where everyone was a little unusual but I liked it there. It wasn’t as if people were mean or weird, they were themselves. Maybe there is something in the air in Madrid that allowed its townspeople to be happy just with what they had. Painting their houses red and blue, placing signs on their flowerpots, cowboy boots on their graves and making a world of hot color hues. I think you should visit Madrid and if you find my Madrid man, tell him thank you for making me believe there were still guys like him out there.
I love Santa Fe…there are a lot of places there where one can get lost in images. I forgot how I loved to take pictures when I was young. I forgot all the time spent in a darkroom and remembered only the long days in a dark room in a hospital where I developed only cancer cells. This was my first job.I think that was what made me less interested in complicated cameras. I was the family photographer when my family was young and once my daughter asked me why there were no pictures of me in the scrapbooks. I was an invisible mother behind a lense. I think I was also an invisible mother some of the time. I wanted to be present with my children but I didn’t know how to be present with myself. I think for many years I was depressed and lacked knowledge on how to find help for this. I think many of us are depressed and can’t admit to this condition as it seems somehow shameful to the world. I know now there are may people with serious emotional issues who feel this way: as if they hold a dark secret from the world. It is interesting to me that having cancer is more acceptable than having depression. If you have cancer you also are likely to get more emotional support as other folks are not frightened of you. In any case my experience in Santa Fe made me understand the importance of solitude and the creative process. I am also beginning to understand the nature of competition in life and the importance of knowing how to handle it. I will never forget my friend, Steve, telling me to try harder when I felt uncertain about my photography class. I went back to class that day with a different approach and did try harder. I produced some of my best shots during the afternoon outing to Madrid and came back to my hotel feeling happy and relaxed. It was a great journey to a different place inside myself. I ma happy to be in a state of mind these days that allows me to make these journeys.