Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Of Spring

I find it exceedingly interesting that I was born during a month of spring. For so long, I haven't really enjoyed spring at all. And I can still understand why I suppose, as spring leads to summer, and summer means the reign of the sun, and the reign of the sun means less comfort from hot drinks and a sunburned earth. Selfish summer.

Or perhaps I am just trivial.

But this year has been much different. Not just in the sense that spring has taken her time, lingering much longer than I remember, but I have actually been glad for her stay, for her company, content in just studying her face, her hands, her eyes, realizing all the things I had missed before. The green around the blue iris, the softness of her smile as it curves to one side of her face and then the other, the gentle curl of her peach colored hair, and the small scar on her right forefinger. 

Yes, last year felt much different. I felt the burden of her stay, of what she would herald in, that coming of the summer wind. I was sad to hold her hand, reluctant to follow, walking instead with eyes turned down, resisting her tug. The path she lead me down I knew the end, yet I did not see what was around, I did not stop to look at what she showed me; for all I saw on that day was the edge of my boots and the weeds and the shadows.

I missed the precious season altogether. 

But, this time, I let her come and spread my fingers with her own, surprised to find it a perfect fit. She squeezed my hand, another surprise, and pulled my sleeve to lead me down the way, but for a moment stopped to whisper in my ear, "just breath, it'll be okay." So down we went along the bends and the dips under canopy green, a slow pursuit of her childhood haunts she wanted to show. The lane of trees she said once seemed to stretch on forever, the infant flowers reaching for the sun, and then there was the spotted mushrooms by the big oak tree where she said the rabbits hide. 

And then her eyes looked back at me, to see if I was coming, to know if I would look. Would he see the life, the earth, the breathe, the buzzing and the bloom? And in that pause I knew that this moment, well, it was different, this time I did not dread it. So I squeezed her hand back and met her gaze, the smile and the laugh, and I knew the time had come to love that which I had lost.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Balancing Act

This image will always intrigue me because, well, I didn't mean for it to happen. Not in the sense that it was an accident, or a stumbled upon success. No, not that. But rather, because it was thought of in the heat of the moment.

You see, I had originally intended to use my little origami paper boats for a photo with an umbrella. But upon coming to my location, where I have shot a few times before, there were two things that stopped me from doing this. The first was that there was a river flowing exactly where I had planned to shoot. Relief from the drought apparently means surprising water levels, so a steady stream blocked me from where I had intended to photograph.  I stared at it for a time, both excited that there is water in the valley, but stumped about where to shoot.

I then turned around and realized the second thing keeping me from completing my photo. I had forgotten the umbrella at home. I sort of just stood there and gazed and the water rushing by and feeling like we had gone out for no reason at all. But my gloom didn't last for very long. What is can not be changed, I reasoned, and I was determined to make something of my paper boats and different location.

And so I went off to think of what to create. Flipping through my sketch book, trying to find some inspiration from past ideas, I wracked my brain of what I should do. I walked and walked, around and about, letting the landscape inspire me. Blindly stumbling through the grass and trees and stepping deep in the unseen mud is more like it, but I searched for whatever it was I should create.

But then I stopped. Or, perhaps more accurately, I stopped in my head and let my body roll forward. The moment of silence in my head led me to pray. Prayer is what I try to fill my silence with. When I am wordless, I know God always has what I need to say, always knows what I should create, always the answers come from Him. And from there I find inspiration, from there I create.

So I went what I had, a challenge to myself to make something purely from the moment, entirely going off of the vision in my mind, the kind that I don't know if it will work, or what the meaning is behind it, but simply what popped in my head when I thought of origami boats and a field. My sister encouraged me to create whatever it was that I thought of, it didn't really matter as long as we tried. 

As long as we tried... the true success of our day.

This photo was a chance taken, a moment held, and a surprise to both my eyes and my mind. My hope is that we find what we should create, and maybe that means more than ideas and planning and stressing over details, but perhaps it is good to work in the moment, and just being in it's ebb and flow, but above it all, to remember to pray when we think we have no where to go.

Because in our unknown, God can work through us.

So here are some behind the scenes photos for you! I have felt completely directionless lately (this could merit an entire blog post/book at the moments about my life, alas) with the blog, so I would love to hear what you guys would like to see more of!

I hope you have an inspiring week!

We have decided that this is our favorite picture from the day.

 This photo will always make me laugh. The mix of Stacey's expression and my inability to keep a paper boat in the frame.