23 May 2017 – A Perfectly Beautiful Tuesday in the Pacific Northwest

Musings in Spring: Robert Frost

“Every poem is a momentary stay against the confusion of the world.”

Art for Spring – Part I of V: Margaret Bourke-White (American, 1904-1971)

Below – “Two Generations” (photograph, 1936)

Musings in Spring: J.R.R. Tolkien

“I am at home among trees.”

Below – Gleb Goloubetski: “A Walk in the Woods”

Art for Spring – Part II of V: Andre Bourrie (French, contemporary)

Below – “By the Side of the Water”

A Poem for Today

Coffee Break
By Kwame Dawes

It was Christmastime,
the balloons needed blowing,
and so in the evening
we sat together to blow
balloons and tell jokes,
and the cool air off the hills
made me think of coffee,
so I said, “Coffee would be nice,”
and he said, “Yes, coffee
would be nice,” and smiled
as his thin fingers pulled
the balloons from the plastic bags;
so I went for coffee,
and it takes a few minutes
to make the coffee
and I did not know
if he wanted cow’s milk
or condensed milk,
and when I came out
to ask him, he was gone,
just like that, in the time
it took me to think,
cow’s milk or condensed;
the balloons sat lightly
on his still lap.

Art for Spring – Part III of V: Joe Bowler (American, contemporary)

Below – “Nude with Shawl”

Musings in Spring: Franz Winkler

“Not too long ago thousands spent their lives as recluses to find spiritual vision in the solitude of nature. Modern man need not become a hermit to achieve this goal, for it is neither ecstasy nor world-estranged mysticism his era demands, but a balance between quantitative and qualitative reality. Modern man, with his reduced capacity for intuitive perception, is unlikely to benefit from the contemplative life of a hermit in the wilderness. But what he can do is to give undivided attention, at times, to a natural phenomenon, observing it in detail, and recalling all the scientific facts about it he may remember. Gradually, however, he must silence his thoughts and, for moments at least, forget all his personal cares and desires, until nothing remains in his soul but awe for the miracle before him. Such efforts are like journeys beyond the boundaries of narrow self-love and, although the process of intuitive awakening is laborious and slow, its rewards are noticeable from the very first. If pursued through the course of years, something will begin to stir in the human soul, a sense of kinship with the forces of life consciousness which rule the world of plants and animals, and with the powers which determine the laws of matter. While analytical intellect may well be called the most precious fruit of the Modern Age, it must not be allowed to rule supreme in matters of cognition. If science is to bring happiness and real progress to the world, it needs the warmth of man’s heart just as much as the cold inquisitiveness of his brain.”

Art for Spring – Part IV of V: Arthur Boyd (Australian, 1920-1999)

Below – “Cows and Pulpit Rock”

A Second Poem for Today

By Billy Collins

A little heat in the iron radiator,
the dog breathing at the foot of the bed,

and the windows shut tight,
encrusted with hexagons of frost.

I can barely hear the geese
complaining in the vast sky,

flying over the living and the dead,
schools and prisons, and the whitened fields.

Art for Spring – Part V of V: Bennett Bradbury (American, 1914-1991)

Below – Untitled California Seascape

Musings in Spring: Roman Payne

“Wandering is the activity of the child, the passion of the genius; it is the discovery of the self, the discovery of the outside world, and the learning of how the self is both ‘at one with’ and ‘separate from’ the outside world. These discoveries are as fundamental to the soul as ‘learning to survive’ is fundamental to the body. These discoveries are essential to realizing what it means to be human. To wander is to be alive.”

Contemporary American Art – Charles Lynn Bragg

In the words of one writer, “Los Angeles-based artist Charles Lynn Bragg (Chick Bragg) was born in 1952. His parents are professional artists (Charles Bragg and Jennie Tomao) and began his training at an early age. Over the next 40+ years, he studied at the California Institute of the Arts, UCLA extension, Otis School of Art and Design, other universities, and private sessions with artists and sculptors in the USA, Italy, and Japan. He is currently enrolled at California State University at Long Beach as a BFA sculpture major. He is best known for his compassionate environmental and marine images of animals and our planet.”

Below – “Geronimo’s Horse”; “Amazon Chief”; “Beef Stew”; “Smoke Hawk”; “Vision Drawing”; “Rogue Wave.”

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