Tuesday, October 27, 2015

On the Edge of Winter

Here we are on the cusp between autumn and winter. There is an element of impatience in the voices of Canada geese as they fly over the house, and all the other migrating wild creatures who are still here seem agitated and anxious to be off on their adventures.

I'm restless too, and words alone don't quite "do it" for me; nor do images, at least most of the time. Morning after morning, I scribble a few words and regard them with mild disdain. I prowl through old photos, looking for an image that adequately describes the dark foggy daybreak beyond the windows, the frosted garden grasses and wilting shrubbery, the bare and eloquent trees.

Archive prowling at the break of day is a perilous undertaking through volume after volume of photo archives and disk after disk of images, all leaving something to be desired. At times, I ponder flogging the cameras to a pawn shop and taking up soap operas or macrame.

What I really need right at these times are sunlight and clear skies, a few inches of snow and an hour or two of wandering the woods on snowshoes: cameras slung around my neck, pockets crammed with filters, lenses and other photographic trappings, food for the birds and Spencer's homemade doggy biscuits too.

Out of the wind on such wanderings, there's fine blue stillness and pools of articulate silence, long resonant conversations with the dreaming trees. Camus wrote that in the depths of winter, he discovered within himself an invincible summer. I suspect that for this old hen, what lies invincible within is early highland winter in all its grandeur.  For all my crankiness about past photographic efforts, images of bare trees, fog and hills with morning light shining through them still catch me by the throat and leave me breathless, every single time.


Pienosole said...

Breathless is how your photos leave me, and probably many of your readers, as well. Please don't "flog" your camera... (and yes, I know you won't, right? :-)).

Mystic Meandering said...

Oh yes, crankiness, restlessness and unsettledness are my companions as well in this season of transition. Solitude and Silence - those are my remedies too... :) Hang in there - winter is coming! :)

Tabor said...

I agree with Plenosole. Your photos always touch me and then you write or find another's words that match up so well. It is my time to pause and sigh in my erratic day.

sarah said...

My comment would merely repeat what the others have said, and agree with your post. I love your picture so much today.

Guy said...


Much as the world needs more macrame, I hope you continue with your wonderful work. Winter seems to raise poets and photographers to even greater heights.

Al the best.

Kiki said...

Oh how you made me smile and grin with this wonderful 'cranky' post. NO, we don't need or want more macrames - we want you, 'the old hen' with your words of wisdom, your poetic photos, your view of the old/cold world up there north.... What shocks me always is how well you love and adapt to the long, long and early winters and to marvel at you for not getting depressed with the early 'Adieu' of summer. Your photo shows bare trees, not a leaf in sight - here in France, my trees very slowsly start to shed their leaves, the limes are just beginning to turn yellow at the edges, the cherry trees have now acquired red-yellow leaves, the magnolias are brown but I've still got lavender blooming (the very late ones) and roses 'on the go'. I have lived in Toronto for a short while (2 yrs) and remember the most beautiful autumns (sorry, falls) with great nostalgia, I remember the cold but dry winters and the hot, humid summers - but you actually seem to thrive on long, snowy, cristal frosty winters.... How interesting, how very wonderfully different we all are.
Now go and take that camera back! ;))))
Much love from a slightly warmer place (although I could never live in the south of France, wayyyyyy too hot in summer!!!)