In Memory of . . .

A young father…
so gone.

A young mother…
so unyielding in her withholding.

A young child…
so bewildered
so lonely
so lost.

Then in time
and more time…

She found her loves
at his feet
she saw her father
on his knees
in her heart
in her mind
and in her twisted deliverance of the babe that was lost.

so broken,
so tragic,
so nothing but echoes
of silent screams
never delivered
against blue and yellow paleness
and still
so misunderstood
she is alone.

In memory of my father who died in a car accident in 1963, and in memory of my infant son who I found dead in his crib early Easter Sunday morning in 1987.


Embrace your sadness
with all the kindness in the world
acknowledge it
listen to it
sit quietly
and hold it for a while.

Wash the dishes
stare at the walls
wander the dusty rooms
of loss and silence
then let the water run down your back
and feel the warmth
of its cleansing.

Emerge from your nakedness
with a skin of your choosing
but not too thick to feel
the caresses of tender winds
that ease the veil
from your soul
in waves of hope
and birdsong.

Today I am pondering sadness and the general attitude that we are supposed to push it away, not dwell on it, not feel it. Every fibre in my being tells me that is wrong. It’s just so wrong. Everybody knows that stuffing emotions causes all kinds of problems with our minds and bodies.

When a life has been deeply marked by a series of losses and tragedies, those experiences can never be erased or denied. Experiences shape us – for better, or worse. I distance myself from negative forces as much as possible, and as a creative person, I tend to live in the moment. I am a seeker of light, but nature teaches us that everything ebbs and flows. Acknowledging and honouring our sadness when it comes is part of the cycle.


Moody Monochrome

I am not a wedding photographer. I don’t even consider myself a photographer. Not really. If something catches my eye, I take a picture with the idea that it might be usable… for something… perhaps a future project. My subjects range from rocks and insects, to shapes and colours, to cherished friends and relatives. One of the best courses I took while studying fine art at Emily Carr College of Art and Design was a black and white photography course… back in the days of film, chemicals, and darkrooms. I transitioned to digital years ago, but I still find that some photos just work better in monochrome.

The images above are from the second of two weddings that I attended up north this summer. This was my niece’s, which took place outdoors on my brother’s 190 acre property in Matheson. Anyway, I basically just wandered around with my camera all day looking for opportunities and anything interesting. The background where the ceremony took place was quite beautiful, and though the sky was unusually ominous, it didn’t rain.

Converting these particular photos to black and white was necessary in order to eliminate the problem of too many colours and shades of green overpowering the composition. By reducing distractions, the vast space and atmosphere are allowed to fully convey their moodiness through texture and contrast in three distinct sections–the sky, the tree line, and the smoother grassy foreground. Objects and/or people in the foreground enrich the whole by suggesting a particular narrative. The result is quite surreal and engaging.

I was surprised that these photos ended up being some of the most interesting of the day, and I just had to share. Let me know what you think, and feel free to share your own experiences/struggles with monochrome vs. colour photography. I’d love to hear from you.

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