A hawk circles
catching drafts
glides into the distance
high pitched screeches
pierce invisible air

dying trees on a ridge
bare branches
glow in the sunlight
like sculptures
reaching for the sky

a perch for hawks
to hang out
large dark eyes
ocular wonders
zeroing into dry grass

last week
in the distance
barely audible  
the unmistakable buzz
of chainsaws

mounds of wood chips
a hawk flies by
skimming tree tops
close enough to touch

a flash of recognition
the hawk
the piles of wood chips

the trees are gone
empty spaces hold
their ghosts

I take a moment
to pause
find my breath
connect the fragments

to be present
feel the loss
see the beauty of the trees
hawks flying
to and from their branches

a moment to mourn
to honor
to be grateful

a prayer
a wish
may you all be safe
may you all find home
may you all come back

Trees on Ridge-4Hawk on branch-2Tree Ghosts 1-3


The Dancer

The last Word Press Weekly Photo Challenge for 2017 is Favorites.

The first of the following photographs was originally posted on June 25th.
I’ve had such a rich experience with this image
what it has shown me about myself
my inner journey, inspiration and creativity.

Last summer I was on vacation
a time for rest, quiet and contemplation
for leisurely walks along the Fox River.
A time to slow down 
to practice mindfulness and presence
awareness of my surroundings.

That’s when I saw her.
At first I didn’t recognize her
standing there
just on the edge of the woods
near the river.

What I love and moves me about this experience
is that I actually saw her.
That I chose to pause
to be with her
to allow a transformation to happen
for the images to flow into each other
and into my camera’s eye.

She was just there
stillness and movement
happening simultaneously.
I saw the grace of a dancer
making her way through the woods.
I came back to visit every day
watching her from different angles
like a dance that progresses
slowly over time.

This week as I look at her image
she dances once again.
I imagine her in black and white 
her movements subtly changing
as she glides from one realm
into the next.

Then she appears fully alive
in vibrant colors
dancing through the woods
toward a carnival in Rio.

For the first time in years
I paint
and paint
for hours.

A Christmas gift to myself.

Dancing Tree - original 1_3695

Dancing Tree - BW vignette-2Dancing Tree - painted 5-3695Word Press Weekly Photo Challenge: Favorites