Sunday, August 21, 2011

The mystery of presence

As you could see from yesterday's sailboat races, one of the joys of this new work I'm doing is the ability to create imaginary landscapes.  It's such fun to layer pieces of different images -- trees from one, mountains from another, clouds and moon from still another -- and pile them all into a single image. 

I'm sure those artists who work with brushes, paints, and pastels get to do this all the time, but for a photographer it's a real departure from the norm: we are so constrained by what is that the chance to play with what could be is exhilarating. 

My daughter pointed out yesterday that the folks (like me) who talk most about the importance of presence, awareness, living in the now are (she finds) the ones who struggle most with that, who find it hardest to do.  So perhaps that explains why creating imaginary landscapes is such a treat for me?  Photography has been a blessing in that it allows me to be totally present to what is, but these experimental pieces allow my mind to do what it always seems to want to do anyway; to step forward and dream of a future or to imagine a different sort of past...  So then I wonder; would Rumi approve of this work?

The mystery of presence

The mystery of presence
will not arrive through the mind,
but do some physical work, and it comes clear.

An intellectual gets bound and wrapped
in complicated nets of connectedness.
Whereas the Friend rides the intelligence
that is creating genius at the center.

The mind is husk, and the appetites love coverings.
They look for them everywhere.
That which loves the kernel and the oil
inside the nut has no interest in shells.

Mind carries reams of reasons into court,
but universal awareness does not move a step
without some definite intuition.
One covers volumes of pages.
The other fills the horizon with light and color.

The value of scrip resides in gold
stored somewhere else. The value of a body
stems from the soul.  The value of soul
drives from presence.  Soul cannot live
without a connection there.



Maureen said...

We all have different ways of getting to the same place.

Your work frequently prompts me to just sit with your images, and that is being in the now of what those images speak to me. As you say, it's all good.

Louise Gallagher said...

I think Rumi would have been in awe of the beauty of your soul -- especially how it is expressed in your work.

Diane Walker said...

You are both so kind; have I mentioned how much I appreciate your continued support?