Posted by: Bruce Proctor | April 3, 2017

Photo: Mike’s Cove as Saturday’s snow was ending

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I was out shoveling as last Saturday’s snowfall eased off, and I saw this in Mike’s Cove off our driveway. This seems like a remarkable photograph to me. What do you think?

For about three months I’ve made basically no photographs. Over the last ten days I’ve had three sessions of remarkable photographs, so the drought seems over.

The six inches of very heavy and dense late-season snow from this last storm Friday night and Saturday, by today, Monday, is already almost entirely gone already. The sunny porch right now is warm with spring.

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Posted by: Bruce Proctor | April 3, 2017

Photos from Winnegance Bridge

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Last Thursday, a bright, sunny day, I noticed the surface of the inner cove off the Winnegance Bridge a couple hundred yards from me as I turned off toward home, looked amazing: rhythmic hummocking of ice, snow, and meltwater. I drove back with camera and tripod in fifteen minutes or so, and the possibilities were still there.

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Posted by: Bruce Proctor | March 25, 2017

Dream of the Elephant God

Dream. I’ve been invited to the house of a couple in their late 30’s in Salt Lake City for an informal spiritual get-together. They have each written their own book on their takes on spirituality/well-being. They are beautiful, energetic, competitive: which book will prove the better spirituality? Spas, diet, spiritual retreats.

I am looking at the woman’s book. Its author photo in the back shows the author naked, spreadeagled, inviting. Some odd spirituality!

Then others arrive, a couple from India, in gorgeous Indian traditional garb. I’m lounging in the adjacent back room. The couple come in and recline beside me, the man throwing his arm across my chest in his gorgeous costume. Is he a prince? Such casual intimacy. I find myself holding him bit by bit, and he is welcoming that. Nothing sexual, just human warmth and love. I find it immensely comforting–maybe because it’s so rare.

In the front room there is now an Indian god idol, an elephant, lavishly, lovingly festooned, costumed, with intricate inlays of jewels, ivory. I realize that this god is a personification of the Indian couple’s inner selves and that each precious adornment is a loving, creative act manifesting their own inner perfection.

The host owners have a daughter, maybe nine years old, blonde, lively, and innocent– that they have raised in the most unusual manner, I assume, because: I’m lying down in the back room. She comes up to me and asks if she can “swap mouth liquids” with me. I say, “Certainly not, but you may pass me a Kleenex.” Later she expectorates into a basin and a great volume of orange juice gushes forth. Later the Indian man comes in and expectorates his own quart of orange juice! Is this some purification ritual?

The girl is most forthcoming to me, entirely at ease with herself, and, although not directly sexual, I realize would welcome sex with someone she likes–even me–even at such a young age. Such maturity, to do that in such openness and awareness at such an age!

On the kitchen table I notice a little creature, in translucent colors, like a gummy bear, but dazzling, two inches tall, moving and dancing about. I call attention to it, and realize now this whole evening has been a dream!  –which startles me so much that I wake up. The girl says, “Oh, that’s such a pity! By coming awake, you’ve lost the power you would have had by waking up in the dream.”

Posted by: Bruce Proctor | March 25, 2017

Photos: Reflections off the foil on my mom’s new chocolate cake

As usual, these aren’t faked. I passed my mom’s cake sitting by the fridge on my way through the kitchen and said, “Whoa!” I did not manipulate anything in making these photographs other than rotate the cake this way and that and square up the camera to what I saw.

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Posted by: Bruce Proctor | March 20, 2017

Dream: the Russian children’s tale

January 7, 2017 1:30 a.m

I am on a crowded train heading east, at night. It could well have been in Russia, though we all spoke American. I was sitting toward the back of the coach, which was lit, but poorly. The interior was murky, a dark, musky red. Maybe the coach was made of red wood, or perhaps it had been upholstered in heavy, red-brown fabric. Maybe it was just bad light. The feel could have been quite old-fashioned.

Up several rows from me a girl, perhaps ten or eleven years old, was holding forth to a rapt group of half a dozen other children about the story of Dr. Zhivago. Finally, I could not contain myself any longer and moved up to join them. I put my hands out toward the girl and began to speak to them all about the deep meaning of the story, the grown-up meanings. They listened with all their being, which surprised me mightily as I was an uninvited guest–and an adult at that.

I broke off finally, self-conscious. We were now somehow seated on the other side of the carriage. They told me, “No! No! We want to hear everything you have to say!” The depth of my urgency broke through me: “As you know, Dr. Zhivago took place in the turmoil of the Russian Revolution. Many, many were killed, or starved, or were caught up in the turmoil. I believe that we have come to a time here tonight where we can and must resolve that agony of so many years ago!”

I spoke mainly to the girl story-teller. She seemed like the central figure–the bringer-together– of the group. And now I was the other center of the web of us all. Still I held back; I knew I myself didn’t know exactly what I was talking about. So there was now a palpable tension.

Across the table from me to my left, a little girl, the smallest of them, only five or six years old, thrust out her arms to me. Since she was so little and apart from the group, I didn’t immediately respond to her. But she was having none of it. She launched her arms again to me and grabbed me: “You must do this!” she cried: “Hold me! Hold me tight!” And she was at my chest, and I held her for dear life. I was afraid I’d crush her, she was so tiny. The rest of the group had me reach out my freer arm through them to the story-teller, and all of them grabbed on.

Then a deep wailing emerged from us, one and all, the littlest one, and me myself, all joined together with all our being. Locked together, we wailed and wailed. I felt from the urgency of it that I might have a physical-world heart attack, and I thought it might go on and on forever. But after a dozen seconds of this overpowering intensity, it suddenly and naturally resolved itself, and I was back in my physical body, coming awake, shaken but at peace.

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