Manna Meditations

finding Narcissus by a quiet stream…

Manna Meditations, Day 33

The Stream snatches a slice out of the sky and pins it down in a furrow of earth, so that all the trees lean over to look, seeing the sight of themselves for the very first time:

They stand astounded, caught in this position for a hundred years, perhaps … Just long enough for their lean forms to lock in the shape of supplication, or prayer.

The Stream laughs all day long at their vanity. But the she laughs, too, at the gift of their beauty, which bends always toward her, backlit by blue.

In the face of our beloved, we seek our own reflection.

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Manna Meditations

gratitude in the winter dark…

(Manna Meditations, Day 23)

In these gray days, let us not forget to look for the ordinary wonder …

To see beauty in bare lines and broken places, in cracks crazing the sidewalk like fine china:

To see color in subtler shades — the blonde of afternoon sunlight.  The burnished bronze of fallen leaves, shining against wet dark asphalt:

Let us see warmth in the naked white limbs of sycamores, which reach out to embrace each other across streets and lanes, unhampered by their green-leaf summer clothing:

And let us see sunsets — one for every day, astoundingly aflame, the gift as predictable as clockwork:

Ah, Lord.  This place is cold and dark…

And also, it is beautiful. 

💛

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Everyday Wonder

A gift to the current Me, from the girl I was last Fall …

Every once in awhile, this magical thing happens to me.

I’ll be plowing through my day, hurried and tense, when suddenly I’ll stumble over a little loveliness, left behind by my past self.

It’s like a gift, really:  the rose petal pressed between two pages.  The poem scribbled on a cocktail napkin, tucked in my coat pocket.

Today though, I found a gift on the memory card of my beat-up old Canon Rebel:

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I don’t know how it happened, but I must have forgotten to load a set of photos from last Fall, because when I plugged in my camera cable and flicked my Rebel on to download new material, a sudden wash of yellow blazed across the screen — the unmistakable colors of Autumn.

I was a little sad back then:  my heart still raw over a dear friend who’d hurt me.  But an aching heart is good for art — every artist knows that — because it’s hungry for the Light.  

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(And when it comes to the Light, hungry is a good thing to be.)

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I still remember taking these shots:  in a sudden fit of frustration, I’d pulled the lens off my camera and simply held it in place, letting the light leak through.

The result is a series of unedited shots that look like watery Impressionist brushstrokes, washed with sun, messy and soft:

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And I needed messy and soft today…  

Maybe you do, too. ❤

 

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Everyday Magic

The Sunshine State, in Black & White

For a long time now, I’ve had a special place in my heart for Florida.

I spent summers there as a kid, tearing around on a bike near the mangroves, coming alive in the steamy green heat.  It’s a nostalgic place for me, and like most nostalgic places, it strikes me as beautiful.

But.

Florida’s beauty is glaring:  like a particularly striking woman who sports bright makeup and an orchid in her hair.  You can’t help but look at her, but if she smudged off the dark lipstick and traded her red dress for black, you might notice the pool of light in the hollow of her collarbone.  

The sun sliding slow over her shoulders.

The subtler magic.

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I guess that’s why I’ve come to like Florida best when she’s photographed in monochrome.

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The photos that follow are quiet ones, collected during a lazy, contemplative week in Punta Gorda.  While there are lovelier snapshots of the sunshine state — oceans full of sundazzle, and foam-swept crashing surf — I think these represent a gentler beauty that others may miss. 

Enjoy… ❤

 

  

   

   

   
  
  
 

  

   

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