The Pink Moment

For many years now I’ve had reverence for “the magic hour” – that brief time before sunset when the light becomes golden or amber or pink. It’s the photographer’s sweet spot, providing a boost of glowing color and shadowy definition to natural scenes. A friend once said it makes us look like “Italian goddesses,” and sometimes when it bathes my surroundings I feel like I’ve been transported into a Maxfield Parrish painting.

My latest collage – “How Do You Spot a Blessing?” – was inspired by how this magical time seems to calm me down and make my soul smile. So, I was thrilled to read the paragraph below in a Conde Nast Traveler article on Ojai, California (the state is a slight obsession of mine):

…Ojai has been a cherished place for any number of California cultures over the years: the Chumash Indians who first settled the valley; citrus and avocado ranchers; theosophists; Krishnamurti; and Hollywood stars, who’ve long owned discreet retreats here… All of them are drawn at least in part by the town’s famous “pink moment,” a fleeting period before sunset when the jagged Topa Topa Mountains that frame the northern edge of this fertile valley take on a dusky-rose hue: It’s an enchanting time that draws the eyes up and clears the mind.

It’s an enchanting time that draws the eyes up and clears the mind…

Sunday evening I was sitting on a bench overlooking the Delaware River sharing a tall Negro Modelo (leftover from our byob Peruvian lunch) with a good friend. We were deep into a meaningful conversation when puffy pink clouds started to float over the mountain across the river. A few of the trees were just starting to exhibit the golden leaves of fall, and the pink light made them glow a vibrant orange amidst their green neighbors. The puffs turned to streaks and soon the sky, the river and my friend and I were all bathed in lavender light. I stopped him mid-sentence and told him about the pink moment. We were silent for a bit, looking up and appreciating the beauty. Soon everything greyed out into dusk and we finished the warming beer. Our conversation continued, but we both came back to it with a slightly heightened sense of awe about the beauty and magic that appears, and disappears, with each day.

Blessing blended small
“How Do You Spot a Blessing” is a digital collage I made from photos I took in New Orleans, LA; Rhinebeck & Woodstock, NY; and my own backyard (the pink sky and dark trees). May it bring you some clarity. And, remember to look up.

Don’t Fear the Rapture

verdant b2“Although everyone feels rivulets of wonder, and even awe, from time to time, not everyone is as comfortable expressing those feelings as freely as John Muir, Ralph Waldo Emerson or Walt Whitman. Amy's rainbow

 

 

 

I suppose what people fear is loss of objectivity. But life doesn’t require you to choose between reason and awe,  or between clear-headed analysis and a rapturous sense of wonder. A balanced life includes both.” – Diane Ackerman, Cultivating Delight

pastorius panerama 2 sm size

Soul Liberation: The Trail Not Taken

Sometimes we feel like we’re at a crossroads.

AT sign in HF
We check in with our head and our heart.

We quiet our mind and try to hear the small, still voice that guides us in a way our brain may not understand.

Often that yields an elegant and true feeling answer.

But sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes we need to detach from the either/or, the this/that, the right/wrong.

Maybe there is no wrong.

Maybe we should be looking for a third option.

frozen canal in HFA new avenue.

One that may appear treacherous at first glance. Impassible. Risky.

But gorgeous in its simplicity. Easy on the soul.

It’s foreign and familiar at the same time.

It’s a leap. But if you land with grace, it might turn into a smooth skate.

Or there might be an opening.

ducks in canal in HF close

To meet new friends. To find a new community.

Feel warmth amidst the crunchy ice.

To bathe in a small pool that promises nourishment and freedom.

To feel home again, in harmony with ourselves.

Embrace the Mystery

In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks. – John Muir

The Ramble 1

 

 

 

“[The Ramble was intended to be an] intricate disposition of lights
and shadows [to] create a degree of obscurity not absolutely impenetrable, but sufficient to affect the imagination with a sense of mystery.”
– Frederick Law Olmstead, co-designer of New York’s Central Park

 

 

 

 

The earth has music for those who listen. – George Santayana

The Ramble 2

There’s nowhere you can be that isn’t where you’re meant to be.
– John Lennon

Are you ready to receive the messages whispering from the
beauty that’s around you?
Are you listening to the music of your life?
Be where you are: receive, listen, embrace the mystery.

Jimi Hendrix Was Wise

When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace. – Jimi Hendrix

holding hands

The story of life is quicker than the blink of an eye, the story of love is hello, goodbye. – Jimi Hendrix

faded rose

Music is my religion. – Jimi Hendrix

It all has to come from inside, though, I guess. – Jimi Hendrix

music door

Jimi was wise.

11.27.42 – 9.18.70

Hello, again.

Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.  – Anais Nin

France toy sail boatsOld friends pass away, new friends appear. It is just like the days. An old day passes, a new day arrives. The important thing is to make it meaningful: a meaningful friend – or a meaningful day. – Dalai Lama

Paris carouselAll changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy, for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter into another. – Anatole France

Paris shouldersHello and goodbye. We say these words everyday. They are polite and traditional. They’re happy and sad, light and dark, cheery and heart-wrenching. They’re the revolving door of our lives. Day in, day out. Loves, friends, family. Strangers. Hello. Goodbye. Hello, again. Make it meaningful.

Of Politics, Poetry & Puzzles

 

One cannot build life from refrigerators, politics, credit statements and crossword puzzles. This is impossible. Nor can one exist for any length of time without poetry, without color, without love.
– Antoine De Saint-Exupery
rain heart full size more color
I’m back to editing the novel I’ve been working on – a political thriller – and I love crossword puzzles, so while I agree with the sentiment of the quote, I am in fact counting on politics to help me build the foundation for my life. Poetry, color & love – of course, everyday.
 

 

 

 

Kairos: will you drive through it?

opening in sky 3

Kairos: an ancient Greek word meaning the right or opportune moment. A moment of indeterminate time when something special happens. A passing instant when an opening appears which must be driven through with force if success is to be achieved. (paraphrased from Wikipedia)

sky 3

Kairos: A time when the conditions are right for the accomplishment of a crucial action; the opportune and decisive moment (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

opening in sky

Kairos: Will you recognize it? And if you do, will you drive through it?

Wisdom Via Cell Phone

“You’re a young man here.”On my walk today I overheard a man talking into his cell. That was the only line I heard, but from the tone of his voice I knew exactly what was going on. A father was talking to his son who had apparently messed up. I couldn’t stop thinking about how brilliantly he had phrased it:  “You’re a young man here.”
We know you’re not yet a full grown man who should be mature enough to know better. But you’re in the beginning stages of becoming that person, someone who takes responsibility for his mistakes, apologizes and makes things right. Here – in this situation – you’re at the gateway of manhood, one foot in, one foot out. We realize that you’ll go back to playing video games with your buddies, but here, now, this is your chance to start out strong, be brave, step up and do the right thing. Soon you’ll get more interested in girls and eventually have to pick a major. You’ll go out on your own and have adventures that will shape your life. But here, now, you’re a young man and I’ve got your back in all the complications of that. But I’m counting on you to take a brave step into adulthood. Here. Where you and I are, right now.
young man statue