Am I the only person who pursues riddles my logical mind knows it can’t solve? Why do we drive on the parkway and park on the driveway? Why do bad things happen to good people? Do humming birds sleep? Why don’t woodchucks chuck wood?
Overlooking a dark Utah vista; what is love, is it an emotion, a chemical reaction, an electrical impulse? Does everyone love the same, and why do so few people feel loved? Yet to quote the great Philosopher Tina Turner “What’s love got to do, got to do with it“
Lauren sat quietly reflecting as the shifting shades of a new day rose over the giant red rock cliffs of Moab. Does she know how much I love her? Have my actions been sincere? When we’re not living out of a van, do I sweep the floor, and help around the house enough? Does buying her flowers say “I love you”, or ” I thought about you, so I killed these beautiful flowers” ?
Why is life so complicated? How would my grandfather feel about his cameras completely rebuilt, surrounded by lenses in a fitted cases? If he were here would he suggest settings to better capture the rocks texture? Would he smile when I told him I’d seen an authentic Ansel Adams glass negative? Would he be proud of the man I’m trying to become?
Adjusting focus, aperture, and shutter speed with each exposure I get closer to capturing the moment. The sun, 91.89 million miles away, discharges a 27 million degree explosion of churning plasma releasing energy at the speed of light. With each shutter that light entangles linear time allowing me to capture a singular moment.
Man if only Ben could see this. The first time we went backpacking a thermal updraft caused cool air to dance through the trees of the Big Thicket. With a smile I said “the trees just took a breath”. He looked at me like I’d lost my mind, he often looks at me like I’ve lost my mind. Jokes on him, you can’t loose something you never had!
A list of life failures runs through my mind as a self-imposed jury passes judgement. Contrary to fairytales somethings in this life can’t be undone. Rolling the aperture towards f 20, the lens flare looks like an explosion over the horizon. Having seen the destructive potential of his creation Alfred Nobel the inventor of dynamite bequeathed his fortune to the Nobel Peace Prize. Why do we admire power, yet pay little homage to selflessness?
As the morning awakens I wonder what it’s like in each home. Coffee pots and tea kettles churning out the mornings addiction. Joggers running from a negative body image, or towards the enjoyment of a physical challenge. Does anyone actually keep New Years resolutions? I’ve been a bit overweight most of my life. Is there’s a good place to get pie and coffee in Moab? Mmmm Pie..
With each shutter click random thoughts flood my soul. I hope that our friend Jeremy who’d recently recovered from a base jumping injury is doing well. We miss skydiving, but more so our community of incredibly authentic, unapologetic, kind, loving, and encouraging people. I wish the church looked like that, I miss church. Will I ever get past that scar tissue and damage? A new day is being born and already my heart is heavy.
A list of friends shoots across my heart, goofy, kind, loving, strange, and wonderful. If only I knew how to tell them how much they meant to me. Sunlight peaking through thin clouds defuses into an expansive array of color. A painter’s palette shifting and swirling by the force of an unseen brush. (Pneuma) the invisible breath spirals clouds twisting them in a fashion reminiscent of Picassos Starry Night.
Looking over, Lauren peacefully sips her coffee. Are emotions real, or are they the perceptions of a fabricated reality? Religion and politics, division, differences of opinion. I suddenly remember that I’m nothing more than water, carbon and random minerals. It’s said that the human body is comprised of around $5 dollars worth of raw elements, and that the soul weighs no more than 21 grams. So I’m just a soul driving a cheap biomechanical suit on a ball of dirt spinning around a star in an ever expanding universes. What is a soul, and why does having an afro mean you have more soul? Stupid ginger hair I want an afro, afros are cool!
Contemplating light and time it’s impossible to negate mortality. Like the capture of a camera our light is only seen for a finite moment. Gazing across a mountain range estimated to be millions, perhaps billions of years old, what am I in this story? What expression of light and time does my image portray? Pressing the shutter release only to realize the battery is dead. Time you fickle mistress.
At full sunrise, 15 minutes into shooting I began breaking down my tripod and cameras. This was a sunrise we never planned to shoot, in a park we didn’t know existed. Giving Lauren a morning hug I reached for my coffee and a cliff bar. I don’t have an answer to a single question but somehow I know, as Bob Marley sang “Every little thing is going to be alright”