Saturday, August 23, 2014

Patterns



"Goddess of Peace" © Paula Scott Molokai Girl Studio


Patterns

BY AMY LOWELL
I walk down the garden paths,
And all the daffodils
Are blowing, and the bright blue squills.   
I walk down the patterned garden paths   
In my stiff, brocaded gown.
With my powdered hair and jewelled fan,   
I too am a rare
Pattern. As I wander down
The garden paths.

My dress is richly figured,   
And the train
Makes a pink and silver stain   
On the gravel, and the thrift   
Of the borders.
Just a plate of current fashion,
Tripping by in high-heeled, ribboned shoes.
Not a softness anywhere about me,   
Only whale-bone and brocade.   
And I sink on a seat in the shade   
Of a lime tree. For my passion   
Wars against the stiff brocade.   
The daffodils and squills
Flutter in the breeze
As they please.
And I weep;
For the lime tree is in blossom
And one small flower has dropped upon my bosom.

And the splashing of waterdrops   
In the marble fountain
Comes down the garden paths.   
The dripping never stops.   
Underneath my stiffened gown
Is the softness of a woman bathing in a marble basin,
A basin in the midst of hedges grown
So thick, she cannot see her lover hiding,
But she guesses he is near,
And the sliding of the water
Seems the stroking of a dear
Hand upon her.
What is Summer in a fine brocaded gown!
I should like to see it lying in a heap upon the ground.   
All the pink and silver crumpled up on the ground.

I would be the pink and silver as I ran along the paths,   
And he would stumble after,
Bewildered by my laughter.
I should see the sun flashing from his sword-hilt and the buckles on his shoes.
I would choose
To lead him in a maze along the patterned paths,
A bright and laughing maze for my heavy-booted lover,   
Till he caught me in the shade,
And the buttons of his waistcoat bruised my body as he clasped me,
Aching, melting, unafraid.
With the shadows of the leaves and the sundrops,   
And the plopping of the waterdrops,
All about us in the open afternoon
I am very like to swoon
With the weight of this brocade,
For the sun sifts through the shade.

Underneath the fallen blossom
In my bosom,
Is a letter I have hid.
It was brought to me this morning by a rider from the Duke.   
“Madam, we regret to inform you that Lord Hartwell   
Died in action Thursday sen’night.”
As I read it in the white, morning sunlight,
The letters squirmed like snakes.
“Any answer, Madam,” said my footman.
“No,” l told him.
“See that the messenger takes some refreshment.
No, no answer.”
And I walked into the garden,
Up and down the patterned paths,
In my stiff, correct brocade.
The blue and yellow flowers stood up proudly in the sun,   
Each one.
I stood upright too,
Held rigid to the pattern
By the stiffness of my gown.   
Up and down I walked,   
Up and down.

In a month he would have been my husband.   
In a month, here, underneath this lime,   
We would have broke the pattern;
He for me, and I for him,
He as Colonel, I as Lady,
On this shady seat.
He had a whim
That sunlight carried blessing.
And I answered, “It shall be as you have said.”   
Now he is dead.

In Summer and in Winter I shall walk
Up and down
The patterned garden paths   
In my stiff, brocaded gown.   
The squills and daffodils
Will give place to pillared roses, and to asters, and to snow.   
I shall go
Up and down,
In my gown.
Gorgeously arrayed,
Boned and stayed.
And the softness of my body will be guarded from embrace   
By each button, hook, and lace.
For the man who should loose me is dead,
Fighting with the Duke in Flanders,
In a pattern called a war.
Christ! What are patterns for?
What an amazingly written poem this is (although I think it would've been much more effective without that last line). I picked it up to read it because of the title-it caught my interest. As I read each line, I was in awe at how 'in the moment' the writing was. And, I wondered, who is this women, Amy Lowell?

Here's a small except from Wikipedia:

"Lowell was said to be lesbian, and in 1912 she and actress Ada Dwyer Russell were reputed to be lovers. Russell is reputed to be the subject of Lowell's more erotic works, most notably the love poems contained in 'Two Speak Together', a subsection of Pictures of the Floating World. The two women traveled to England together, where Lowell met Ezra Pound, who at once became a major influence and a major critic of her work."

A fascinating personality-you can read more about her here


Come join us every week, as a group of us from around the world post our shadow shots over at Shadow Shot Sunday 2. Entertain your muse and be amused by stopping by to see what others have posted!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Malpais-BadlandsThat Are Good!

Lone pine tree at Malpais, NM © Paula Scott Molokai Girl Studio


"You are the truth from foot to brow. Now, what else would you like to know?"   ~Rumi

Malpais means, 'badlands' and here in New Mexico, it is a National Monument Park. They're called the badlands "due to the extremely barren and dramatic volcanic field that covers much of the park's area." (Wikipedia)

Lucky me. I got to go not once, but twice this year! Both trips were completely different. The lava fields out that way are stupefying. No other word for it, I'm afraid. Funny though, on both trips, I did not go to the lava fields and photograph that because that becomes the entire trip for the day and we were trying to pack in as much as we could. And, let's face it. It can be either pretty darned hot traipsing across the lava fields or miserably cold-depending on the time of year. This particular area was quite magical unto itself. So many nooks and crannies and smooth rock like this. The vantage point on the top is pretty amazing too. On a clear day, I'm sure you can see Arizona!

Come join us every week, as a group of us from around the world post our shadow shots over at Shadow Shot Sunday 2. Entertain your muse and be amused by stopping by to see what others have posted!

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Shadow Bending



If you were just to look at the image of the shadow, you would think that the fork is bent. But, it's not. Talk about all the ingredients being in one place at one time-the time of day, probably the time of year and the angle of the sun as it hits the fork-I'm sure it all adds up to this interesting phenomena of a 'bent' shadow.

And, I will declare here for anyone who will listen, how grateful I am that my family and friends in Hawaii got through hurricane Iselle unscathed. With hurricane Julio right behind and it's path is still an uncertainty, my sister in Hilo is leaving the windows boarded up. For many of us, it was needles and pins watching this event unfold. We are all heaving a soft, collected sigh of relief as we do  yet another 'wait and  see' with this next one to come.

Come join us every week, as a group of us from around the world post our shadow shots over at Shadow Shot Sunday 2. Entertain your muse and be amused by stopping by to see what others have posted!

Saturday, August 02, 2014

The Perfect Shadow

...Of Mt. Fuji can be found here (and read the story that tells of the attempts).

Mt. Fuji Shadow © Kris JB

Photographer, Kris JB took this spectacular image. It was not a lucky shot-it was a result of several attempts and climbs in order to get this. Mind you, Mt. Fuji is often enshrouded in clouds just to give you a sense of appreciation of his efforts.

I can't even say that I wish I had taken this shot as I don't feel that way! I'm not one to climb a mountain such as Mt. Fuji repeatedly to get a shot like this-I don't have it in me. I'm glad Kris did, though!

And, as hard as it is to not post my very own shadow shot this week, I'm afraid I 'have to' so that you can fully soak in the awesomeness of this image and the energy it took to get it just so. You can purchase a copy of this print at Kris's website.

Spectacular. 

Bravo, Kris JB! Bravo!

Come join us every week, as a group of us from around the world post our shadow shots over at Shadow Shot Sunday 2. Entertain your muse and be amused by stopping by to see what others have posted!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

The Yellow Umbrellas (Christo and Jeanne-Claude) 1991

We were lucky enough to actually see one of Christo's and Jeanne-Claude's environmental works of art when we were living in Southern California in the year of 1991. I was not only able to take my mom to see it when she visited me, but also my brother Robert and our friend, Carol.

The area that the umbrellas were in was near the area that we called the Gorman Pass. We lived about 17 miles down the road in the suburbs of Castaic, CA.

If you don't know much about this monumental work of art (and of Christo and Jeanne-Claude's lifetime achievements), be sure to learn more about it here

Spectacular doesn't even begin to describe it. Currently, at The Albuquerque Art Museum, an exhibit is on display-notes, drawings, photos, etc. of the many projects that spanned over 40 years. Anyway, this is what got me to thinking about the fact that I had my own set of images and a fabric sample of the umbrellas that were in CA and Japan.

My mom and I: October, 1991


Carol, myself and my brother, Robert Mondoy: October, 1991

The underview...

Fabric samples-yellow for California and blue for Japan

Oddly enough, what I never realized until I saw the exhibit at the museum is that Christo and Jeanne-Claude FUNDED their own works. No grants, no private donations. And all of the projects tooks years and years of planning, meetings, environmental studies, you name it. Which is really staggering when you think about the fact that the Gates project in Central Park in New York City (Feb. 2005) cost them 21 million dollars. 21.You read that right.

Wow. Thank you, Christo and Jeanne-Claude!

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