Published on 03/14/08 at 01:48:50 pm using 83 words.

Dedicated to the best and most patient of men.

Photograph by Iris H.

It’s funny… often my first thought upon looking at that image of the Christ doesn’t derive from the welcoming, comforting goodness the statue is often associated with. I see, instead, someone on the verge of diving or bungee jumping.

For a few other Christ, the Redeemer shots click here, here, here, and here.

A pint-sized surprise revisited

Published by Iris in Inspired by, People, Miscellaneous,
Published on 02/29/08 at 03:56:33 pm using 326 words.

I am engrossed in Me Talk Pretty One Day, having finally arrived at the title essay, bracing myself for Jesus shaves, both looking forward and dreading the coming laughter - that stomach churning monster that folds you in two and has you begging for relief. I am engrossed in the essay, entertaining private thoughts of Paris (and Prague and Dublin while I’m at it) when I look to the left - in that rolling bus motion that makes the words dance on the page - and see a familiar profile. Pint-sized profile. Apple cheeks. Almond, hazel eyes. Actually, a darker shade of brown today. Could it be her? What are the odds? The certainty is great enough to warrant the return of the smile with a life of its own but not complete enough to keep me from grappling with the remaining sliver of doubt or digging for evidence in the most passive way available to me. (I feel lazy and ‘loner-like’. I find myself shunning interaction at present.)

‘Look over here, little girl.’ I hear the words in my head. ‘The view from the window is really not that great! The aisle is where it’s at!’ The blatant self-interest thinly veiled by a combo of raised eyebrow and smirk - also limited to the confines of my head.

Platinum flower earring

No effect.

Those platinum flower earrings, though… just like the ones I used to wear as a child… they tip me off further. But is it really her? She seems more outspoken today. Or more ‘outbabbled,’ rather. More confident on daddy’s lap. Choosing a random syllable and repeating it in a decisive voluntary stutter.

Eventually her little head does swing my way. And it is her. Little Iris. A day older. Already brighter. With added poise. Alert.

Still a magnet to my eyes.

'He nice...'

Published on 02/28/08 at 08:04:07 pm using 59 words.

Dedicated to those who have at one time or another welcomed the challenge of learning a foreign language.

Photograph by Iris H.

‘He nice, the Jesus.’

(Jesus shaves - David Sedaris)

For more Christ shots click here, here, here and here.

On the back of photographs

Published by Iris in Memory Lane, Random Thoughts, Miscellaneous,
Published on 02/26/08 at 01:34:00 pm using 102 words.

Photograph by Iris H.

Writing on the back of photographs is a chosen habit for me. Not names or dates or common descriptions - nothing practical, but thoughts, forced reasoning, written expressions of a mood, pieces of unspoken lucidity, the odd private-eye-taken black & white shot of lunacy just passing through, evidence tagged with an expiration date. The words add… the words are that measure of life the still images lack. The words take it up where the images leave off. They work in unison.

A pint-sized surprise

Published by Iris in Inspired by, People, Miscellaneous,
Published on 02/26/08 at 12:07:37 pm using 149 words.

A pint-sized surprise had trouble going through the turnstile this morning. ‘Had’ in a loose sense of the word. It’d be more to the point to say trouble was had for her. She was carried and thus oblivious to any and all surrounding difficulties. Oblivious, almond-eyed, hazel-eyed, covered in shapes, colors and textures, squeezable, drooling and not too bright. It’ll come to her. The brightness, the unenviable sturdiness, the occasional misplaced roughness, the neuroses. For now, she’s something to look at in awe. An atom, a speck of life, quite purposeless but still a magnet to your eyes.

‘What’s her name?’ I ask, finding it hard to dissolve the smile.

‘Iris. Her name is Iris.

Uh-oh. The smile just developed a life of its own.

No Film for Blinking Men

Published by Iris in Inspired by, Movies, Rant,
Published on 02/23/08 at 06:10:26 pm using 274 words.

No Country for Old Men

My first rant on this blog just had to be movie-related. And this is so tiny a reason to rant, against the indisputable cinematic achievement that is No Country for Old Men, that no one in their right mind would have noticed the detail I’m writing about let alone take time to write about it. But this is me. Someone not quite in her right mind, I guess…

Now, think with me. If you’re an unknown actor in Hollywood, and are given the opportunity to be in a Coen brothers movie and not just any Coen brothers movie, but what may turn out to be their masterpiece, wouldn’t you be willing, even anxious to do your absolute best? To contribute your 2¢ humbly and eagerly? Why then, would you take a simple death scene, and mangle it by diverting attention to yourself (blinking repeatedly after you’re on the ground, covered in blood, supposedly dead) and showing thereby that you’re not even effective as an extra? How hard can it be to keep your eyes wide open and still for… what, twenty @#%&?! seconds? Can someone be dumb enough to think ‘Oh, I’ll be out of focus. No one will notice if I just blink methodically.’ Well, I noticed. And I resent having had my attention taken from Javier Bardem’s chilling performance for the few seconds I felt compelled to gape in utter astonishment at those blinking eyes in the background.

For those of you who have seen the movie: ‘room 138′ scene, second man down.

No Country for Old Men Poster

Good morning

Published by Iris in Inspired by, The Written Word,
Published on 02/23/08 at 01:19:53 pm using 831 words.

The last couple of virtually wordless posts, Sunrise on February 18th, 2008 and Sunrise on February 21st, 2008 (pictures of stunning sunrises taken with my brand new blue Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3, the current inanimate love of my life) brought back to mind Dr. Maya Angelou’s Inaugural Poem (the one read at the first Clinton Inauguration.)

It’s one of those you should come back to from time to time.

Right at ‘Women, children, men…’ I’ll be reaching for the tissue. Nothing to be scared or ashamed of. Just a sign that it’s all being taken in - the words and their meaning. Just a natural result of allowing oneself to be affected - of granting the words leave to work their magic and carry out the noble intent of adding hope where hope is needed.

A Rock, A River, A Tree
Hosts to species long since departed,
Marked the mastodon.

The dinosaur, who left dry tokens
Of their sojourn here
On our planet floor,
Any broad alarm of their hastening doom
Is lost in the gloom of dust and ages.

But today, the Rock cries out to us, clearly, forcefully,
Come, you may stand upon my
Back and face your distant destiny,
But seek no haven in my shadow.

I will give you no more hiding place down here.

You, created only a little lower than
The angels, have crouched too long in
The bruising darkness,
Have lain too long
Face down in ignorance.

Your mouths spilling words
Armed for slaughter.

The Rock cries out today, you may stand on me,
But do not hide your face.

Across the wall of the world,
A River sings a beautiful song,
Come rest here by my side.

Each of you a bordered country,
Delicate and strangely made proud,
Yet thrusting perpetually under siege.

Your armed struggles for profit
Have left collars of waste upon
My shore, currents of debris upon my breast.

Yet, today I call you to my riverside,
If you will study war no more. Come,

Clad in peace and I will sing the songs
The Creator gave to me when I and the
Tree and the stone were one.

Before cynicism was a bloody sear across your
Brow and when you yet knew you still
Knew nothing.

The River sings and sings on.

There is a true yearning to respond to
The singing River and the wise Rock.

So say the Asian, the Hispanic, the Jew
The African and Native American, the Sioux,
The Catholic, the Muslim, the French, the Greek
The Irish, the Rabbi, the Priest, the Sheikh,
The Gay, the Straight, the Preacher,
The privileged, the homeless, the Teacher.
They hear. They all hear
The speaking of the Tree.

Today, the first and last of every Tree
Speaks to humankind. Come to me, here beside the River.

Plant yourself beside me, here beside the River.

Each of you, descendant of some passed
On traveller, has been paid for.

You, who gave me my first name, you
Pawnee, Apache and Seneca, you
Cherokee Nation, who rested with me, then
Forced on bloody feet, left me to the employment of
Other seekers–desperate for gain,
Starving for gold.

You, the Turk, the Swede, the German, the Scot …
You the Ashanti, the Yoruba, the Kru, bought
Sold, stolen, arriving on a nightmare
Praying for a dream.

Here, root yourselves beside me.

I am the Tree planted by the River,
Which will not be moved.

I, the Rock, I the River, I the Tree
I am yours–your Passages have been paid.

Lift up your faces, you have a piercing need
For this bright morning dawning for you.

History, despite its wrenching pain,
Cannot be unlived, and if faced
With courage, need not be lived again.

Lift up your eyes upon
The day breaking for you.

Give birth again
To the dream.

Women, children, men,
Take it into the palms of your hands.

Mold it into the shape of your most
Private need. Sculpt it into
The image of your most public self.
Lift up your hearts
Each new hour holds new chances
For new beginnings.

Do not be wedded forever
To fear, yoked eternally
To brutishness.

The horizon leans forward,
Offering you space to place new steps of change.
Here, on the pulse of this fine day
You may have the courage
To look up and out upon me, the
Rock, the River, the Tree, your country.

No less to Midas than the mendicant.

No less to you now than the mastodon then.

Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.

For J.F.A. ;)

Currently shattering window panes with a rendition of…
David Gray - My oh my/White Ladder

Sunrise on February 21st, 2008

Published on 02/21/08 at 09:04:26 pm using 32 words.

Photograph by Iris H. - February 21st, 2008

A little early and uncalled for to be watching TV, imo…