cee's black and white challenge

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Nikon D750 f/4.2 1/3200 46mm 800 ISO

Hop on over to Cee’s to explore and join the fun of photo challenges.

lens-artists photo challenge: narrow…

or it seems so at the end of the tunnel.

striving after true inner freedom…

stop

Nikon D750 f/4.2 1/2500 38mm 800 ISO

“21 October, After Dinner

It is a slow and painful process, this striving after true inner freedom. Growing more and more certain that there is no help or assurance or refuge in others. That the others are just as uncertain and weak and helpless as you are. You are alway thrown back on to your own resources. There is nothing else. The rest is make-believe. But that fact has to be recognized over and over again. Especially since you are a woman. For a woman always longs to lose herself in another. But that too is a fiction, albeit a beautiful one. There is no matching of lives. At least not for me. Perhaps for a few moments. But do those moments justify a lifetime together? Can those few moments cement a shared experience? All they can do is give you a little strength. And perhaps a little happiness. God knows, being alone is hard. For the world is inhospitable. In the past I used to dream of giving it to one person. But it was not to be. And when you reach such painful truths at the age of 27, you sometimes feel quite desperate and lonely and anxious, although independent and proud at the same time. I have confidence in myself and I shall manage by myself. The only measure you have is yourself. And the only responsibility you can shoulder in life is responsibility for yourself. But you must do it with all your strength. And now to ring up S.”

cited: Trans: A Pomerans, An Interrupted Life The Diaries of Etty Hillesum, 1983. pg 46.

Image and quote from Etty Hillesum’s diary submitted in response to the World is a Book’s lens-artists’ photo challenge: narrow.

2020 photo challenge: patterns

winter’s greeting

Nikon D750 f/4.5 1/3200s 85mm 800 ISO

I often find myself whining during this time of the year as winter’s dormant colors…its various hues of yellows and browns…stir up a visual yearning for the greens of spring.

This impatience with Mother Earth’s slumber…this “gaikan“…this outward judgmental direction upon the external world that feeds a delusional belief, “life would be better only if you change…” has been silenced with an acceptance that it is not Mother Earth’s nature to bend to my will and an intention to open myself to the various elements of photo composition she offers to my wandering eye.

My eyes first were attracted to the repeating patterns of the building and then to the repeating patterns of the yellow strips within the curve of the trail. Then a gift…a runner whose figure completed the image. Her greeting and smile were icing on the cake.

To join in the fun of learning and applying various elements of photography hop on over to Travel’s Words and “Shoot from a different perspective. Look up, look down or shoot from a distance.”

six word saturday…'ped'es'train' is someone traveling by 'foot'

‘ped’es’train’ … abstract street photography
Nikon D750 f/7.1 1/500s 85mm

-ped a combining form with the meaning “having a foot” of the kind specified by the initial element:

Hop on over to Debbie’s (Travel with Intent) to join Six Word Saturday

ORIGIN OF -PED

< Latin -ped-, stem of -pēs -footed, adj. derivative of pēs foot

fading memories

fading memories… Nikon D750 f/5.6 1/400s 78mm

 “At the threshold of stillness within silence, the scent of mothballs signals the opening of a small steamboat trunk entrusted with long-forgotten memorabilia.  Carefully placed upon a layer of women’s 1930 era clothing are three stacks of yellow ribbon-tied envelopes. Within each are hand-written letters reminiscent of second grade penmanship inquiring, “Dear Mother, how are you?  Fine I hope.”  On the left side is a stationery box filled with certificates of marriage, birth, baptism, and death intermingled with a child’s brilliantly colored drawings. Beneath the box is a small silk sachet holding a solitary diamond engagement ring and an ivory locket.  At the bottom of the trunk, children’s books and wooden blocks with carved letters surround a miniature wooden rocking chair and a one-button eyed velvety-patched teddy bear. I become distracted from the remaining contents as black and white photograph images softly held within the folds of a woman’s garnet silk dress glide in the air and scatter on the floor.

“The photographic images are a visual memoir of a young family where trust once allowed two young sisters to roam free throughout a field of tall, yellowed grass.  ‘How many days,’ my questioning mind wonders, ‘how many days were left before the decline of my father’s health shifted the lights of a colorful present into the gray-shaded time of waiting?’ Within this stillness of waiting, memory tells of a young child seeking solace through repetitive rocking behaviors and of a father’s fragile heart enduring a turbulent wait for a donated aorta.

I hear compassion speak to my heart and I begin to feel how my father intuitively knew of my inner turmoil and of the tranquil stillness within rhythmic repetition.   His gift of a rocking chair tells me some fifty years after his death of the multiple emotional and physical sufferings within his suffering, the interconnectedness of the suffering within the family, and of his wish to ease our suffering.” …

~B C Koeford, A Meditative Journey with Saldage

early morning readings

Your imagination and your emotions are like a vast ocean

Etty Hillesum
shields pond…Nikon D750 f/4.5 1/400s 55mm

“…But let me impress just one thing upon you, sister. Wash your hands of all attempts to embody those great, sweeping thoughts. The smallest, most fatuous little essay is worth more than the flood of grandiose ideas in which you like to wallow. Of course you must hold on to your forebodings and your intuitions. They are the sources upon which you drew, but be careful not to drown in them. Just organize things a little, exercise some mental hygiene. Your imagination and your emotions are like a vast ocean from which you wrest small pieces of land that may well be flooded again. The ocean is wide and elemental, but what matter are the small pieces of land you reclaim from it. The subject right before you is more important than those prodigious thoughts on Tolstoy and Napoleon that occurred to you in the middle of last night, and the lesson you gave that keen young girl on Friday night is more important than all your vague philosophisings. Never forget that. Don’t overestimate your own intensity; it may give you the impression that you are cut out for greater things than the so-called man in the street, whose inner life is a closed book to you. In fact, you are no more than a weakling and a nonentity adrift and tossed by the waves.

Keep your eye fixed on the mainland and don’t flounder helplessly in the ocean…”

cited: Etty Hillesum, An Interrupted Life The Diaries of Etty Hillesum 1941-1943, pp.6-7