Wednesday, August 31, 2016
Margaret and I attended a meeting at First United Methodist Church in San Diego tonight, and we came away with a sense that we are part of a community that enriches us. The senior pastor arranged with the School of Christian Studies to hold four evenings of discussion about the subject of human sexuality and the church's position relative to inclusion or exclusion of persons whose orientation is homosexual. We came away with the distinct impression that our part of the world is changing for the better. Perhaps sixty people were in attendance, and the small group that sat around our table agreed that our community of faith is open and welcoming to all people... and that all means all.
Tuesday, August 30, 2016
I was looking through my journals again today, perhaps with the image of the two neighbor children standing proudly to have their pictures taken before their first day of school. In the journal for Monday, March 12, 1990, I found a verse I wrote after Margaret and I saw David off to his first day of work at Scripps Clinic in San Diego. He had finished his PhD work and was off to begin his post-doc assignment. I remember the day as if it were yesterday.
He came down to breakfast this morning
dressed for his first day at the clinic
and his Mother and I looked him over
the way we must have done on a dozen other first days
We approved his choice of shirt and trousers
then sent him out into the world once more,
this time as Dr. Miles, biologist and research scientist.
Parenting is interesting work when you can get it.
Monday, August 29, 2016
Sunday, August 28, 2016
Today we go back to San Diego, but before we leave we went over to Rabbit Run Theatre and to a couple of beaches on Lake Erie before going to the airport. The pictures today are of the lake, Joaquin, my Son David, my Niece Janet, a sugar maple tree, and a close-up of another tree at Rabbit Run Theatre.The visit with my sister and her family has been very good. She and Don are settled into their new home.
Tonight Rabbit Run Theatre company will present the final production of The Complete Works of Shakespeare. I’m sorry I’ll be leaving Cleveland without the pleasure of seeing the play. Reviews in the newspaper have been good. Tomorrow I’ll be back to my regular routine of photographing whatever catches my eye, and writing.
Saturday, August 27, 2016
Saturday was a special day. Before a picnic at Janet'sand Richard's house in the afternoon, some of us went up to Geneva on Lake Erie. Geneva is a summer coastal section of the lake like the San Diego beach regions but this one is for the Cleveland area. It's green and beautiful, but California beach towns are different in a good way. The beaches here are manufactured and the houses along the beach remind me of Ocean beach in San Diego. We go back home tomorrow with renewed appreciation for home.
Friday, August 26, 2016
The family met in Madison, Ohio, at a Mexican restaurant for supper. I was aware of it before, but I became even more convinced that there are few collections of people more special, more precious than family. Margaret and I have had a couple of days with Helen and Don and their children, then our children joined us. We believe we have the perfect family. Margaret and I agree that here is nothing about David, David or Nancy that we would change, and nothing about those we are visiting that we would change. Life is good.
Thursday, August 25, 2016
Tuesday, August 23, 2016
There is a Child Alive in Me
There is in me alive a child who tugs
and sets my face toward the rising sun
on days when clouds obscure the sky,
who shows me how to be what I must be.
He is that part of me that I can always trust,
that asks questions
instead of bluffing with an answer
when it’s clear I haven’t got a clue.
And when I die it will be he who leads me
into darkness wondering but unafraid.
Monday, August 22, 2016
My major task today was checking, sorting old photographs, mostly slides, but also some prints. All day the past kept moving into my consciousness. I looked at images of people and places, mostly at images I captured a long time ago, and I tried to decide what to do with them. It was hard to throw away anything, even the smallest least significant thing. I’m finally getting around to doing the first part of something that I’ve said I must do someday. Now is the time. I recognize those people in the pictures standing by a seaside or before a mountain. I’ve lived in many places and have known many people. Memory is mostly a good thing, a sweet thing. Even those pictures of me that someone else took, the ones that show mustache and hair still brown, were of someone I remember fondly.
quivering there in mist?
a dream of the past
years stretching back
of a boy
how could he know
the world swallows everything…
Saturday, November 17, 1990
Sunday, August 21, 2016
Saturday, August 20, 2016
Palm Bark is otherworldly. As the palm tree grows, the old palm fronds as cut away, year after year, and finally the tree is tall and looks as if it belongs in San Diego. It does belong. I took two shots of the bark of the same tree. The more I look at it, the more I like it. Every line, every crack means something. I don't need to know what the lines mean; but if I failed to recognize the beauty in them, I'd be poorer.
Friday, August 19, 2016
Watching the evening news on TV, I saw floods in Louisiana and fires in California and there was that 5-year-old child in Allepo pulled out of a bombed building in Syria, and so I went to my notebook and found a poem I wrote on June 7, 1990. I don't know any more now than I did then about why some folks get slammed while others seem not to be hit at all.
What Is It In the Scheme of Things
What is it in the scheme of things
determines who will be happy and who won’t be?
Is there some game played by the gods.
(surely we want to think in greater numbers than one
to void offense for wondering if one deity alone
might be the author of such misery
as can be found within a ten minute walk
in any direction you choose from anywhere)
or is something else built into the universe quite by accident.
I prefer to think there is no intelligence behind it,
this dreadful disease that sweeps across the face of earth
dropping dismal despair on whole families
leaving others untouched and laughing all around.
Even Adam had a little trouble with his boys,
and for that matter, Jesus’ family
had more than a little confusion in it,
seeing as how there isn’t any such thing as a joyful pieta.
Tolstoy was on to something he didn’t finish telling
either because he didn’t have more information
or something or someone cautioned him to say no more
about how all happy families are alike
but unhappy ones are unhappy in their own way.
Thursday, August 18, 2016
BACK ON THE BICYCLE this afternoon… along the San Diego River in Mission Valley out to the Pacific Ocean. San Diego by the river is a quiet place if you find a spot away from traffic. I found such a place today. The shoes: there is surely a story that I will never know. Not knowing is sometimes better than knowing. This was one of those times.
Out at the entrance to Mission Bay some boats were resting and others were coming or going. There are stories there, too. Bicycling in the late afternoon is a good break from work that has to be done, and it gave me a chance to think over what I heard in the meeting last evening.
Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Florence Foster Jenkins is a movie worth seeing. I’ve been reading essays and books on art lately, and I feel that there is something that I’m missing in the work of some artists. Some don't make sense sometimes. It’s interesting that Florence Foster Jenkins, the real person not Meryl Streep who played her in the movie, but the real Madam Florence thought she could sing correctly. The experience of the movie is worth the time especially when it can be fitted in between other duties that are tiring. I hadn’t found my photograph for today before the movie, but driving home from the movie theater I remembered a single orchid, the only one on a stalk from last year that bloomed again this year, and I thought it would make an appropriate picture for today. There is only one like it. It’s beautiful.