keep your peepers open!

keep your peepers open!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

bees & boxes

bees rest on blossoms
faint summer steps do not wake
the sleeping garden. - tsl

Haiki baffled me when it was first introduced in English class way back when. My instructor explained it in a way that, once we began to read examples then attempted to create our own, eventually made me view these poems with distance disinterest. Into a box they went along with the poor grades I received for my “clumsy” constructions. So when I found myself piecing together 5-7-5 patterns of words while resting in my treehouse many moons later (enamored was I with not just the view but also a man), a familiarity I could not shake came over me. No longer contained in that box with a teacher’s name long forgotten, haiku had stepped out for us to get reacquainted.

Like so much of my creativity, I color outside the lines as I live outside of the box. What I mean is I have a healthy respect for the instruction it takes to learn various art forms; respect, admire and even own the works of those who have studied and mastered their craft. I never set myself on a path to become an artist/writer/photographer however they were waiting for me to find that part of me as I traverse my life journey. When we met, self-expression became the teacher allowing me to experiment with words and different art mediums. I bring forth what is innate, not what is contained in that box of a house drawn with a square base, triangle roof, and a swirl of smoke coming from a rectangle chimney… you know the one filled with judgment, restrictions and “just like the rest” creativity if creativity even actually resides there. Maybe you live here…where was I going with this? Oh yeah…

I recently purchased a book of haiku and was quite surprised to find it filled with several poems of three lines that did not add up to seventeen syllables. An affirmation that perhaps there is something to seeing beyond the rules and lessons in order to find creative expression? For some, absolutely! Maybe I can’t call my simple constructions “haiku” however, I am inspired to write (and paint and take photos and collage and…) because they exist. You should be too.

And if you own that property I spoke of, climb on out, put that house on the market, unlock your creative spirit and…

keep your peepers open! ®

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

red dragons

I continue to return to what I've dubbed my Saturday Patio on a frequent basis, sometimes taking others to marvel at the hidden oasis that is Hillwood. On my last visit, I packed into a sling a small empty bottle, a plastic cup, several paint brushes, a box of watercolors, and a pad of paper. I dipped that cup into the pond in the Japanese garden, ascended the stairs to my patio, transferred half of the water to the bottle, and settled down to paint under a cloudy sky though the day was quite warm. Before I made the first stroke, the memory of sitting poolside in Ouarzazate, Morocco with my watercolors suddenly brought to mind the freedom of painting without expectation or judgment allowing the strokes to land as I felt them. I thought about the class I had taken at a Buddhist temple in NYC...dip the brush, drop it to paper, drag it freely across without I rolled my wet brush in red paint to begin.

That same morning I had read the following:

Between the moon coming out
And the sun going in -
The red dragon-flies.
- Nikyu

The person who penned those lines was referring to the insect; I read it as a red dragon flying across a sky at dusk. I have to say that this passage was in mind as I moved from drop and drag to drop and swirl to quick light strokes.

Free to interpretation is the heart of a finished creation. Stepping away once completed, I saw more than the red dragon. What do you see?

Indeed there is more to find between the strokes if you...

keep your peepers open! ®

Sunday, June 21, 2015


…celebrate them be they near, far or watching over from above…

Happy Father’s Day to the men who take good care of children in their care no matter what their age and by their, I mean the child or the father. Have the best day and…

keep your peepers open! ®

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

musical garden

Lady Day… the scent of a gardenia…intoxicating.

keep your peepers open! ®

Sunday, June 14, 2015


Water, be it the waves of an opalescent ocean, tiny white snowflakes, fat drops of splashing rain, in a tub filled with bubbles, or simply infused with lemon in a tall glass, fuels my creativity. So when I arrive upon a garden that has just been watered, a magic spell comes over me. The wet beaded iridescent jewels shining along the path turn my walk into a private fairyland where I feel like a princess on a mission to capture light reflected in and through thousands of droplets suspended from and attached to petals of every shape, size and tone. Taking in all that sparkle gives me a delighted rush that I hope translates through the picture; I never grow tired of trying to capture a perfectly clear crystal of water hanging in wait.


When I look at these photos, I want to be like Alice, shrinking down until I can stand beneath any of these flowers waiting for them to let go of their beads to form a crown for this princess in her moment, the beads then bursting to release a cleansing shower of light washing me with wonder. Now that’s a feeling that when l close my eyes to imagine, makes me shimmer.

You can find light in unusual places if you…

keep your peepers open! ®

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

love bugs

Me and magnolia trees have a herstory. When I see them anywhere, especially if their flowers are huge, bursting with fragrance and velvety softness, I just have to take pictures. So imagine my surprise to find fireflies in the folds of lush petals coupling shamelessly in the midst of other bugs moving about as I was editing my photos. Even more surprising was a human interest story on the news about a place where hundreds of people gather to witness lightening bugs mating in the evening, the females flashing bright signals once they have finished.

I love when things come together and I’m not talking about the love bugs. While capturing the blooms, I was fascinated by the many insects all over the magnolia flowers not knowing why there seemed to be more than a few of them; seeing the story so soon after let me know that it is mating season for the little insects that I caught in a jar when I was a kid, that when I was a child I would have never understood that when one finds love, a light lights up inside that, like these tiny creatures, then radiates out from every pore of our bodies. Without that, perhaps it’s just like and honestly, we all deserve to glow with a feeling that makes us feel like we’re about to take flight. I know how that feels, so though I innocently intruded on bugs in love, I’m glad they were there to remind me…

keep your peepers open! ®

Sunday, June 7, 2015

printing moments

I spent several hours outdoors yesterday. It felt quite marvelous outside in the sunshine, a nice breeze coming by just when I needed it to cool the beads of sweat forming on my brow. Butterflies, bees, bugs, blooms and the beeping sound of a battery dying in my camera! How had I left the house without a spare? As it took its last shot, I flashed back to a trip to Santa Fe taken over 7 years ago. Prior to leaving, I had checked the camera. The battery was fine, film was loaded but when I took it out to capture some mountains in the distance, nothing happened. A disappointing pit formed in my stomach knowing that I would not be able to record being in a place where I had a spiritual awakening. Back home from New Mexico, I had to tell about rather than show evidence of my trip and it was then that I began to grasp the concept of being in the moment; not having the ability to take photos had made me LIVE the land, each experience rather than record them. To this day, I can recount that journey in great detail by just closing my eyes.

Yesterday, I found a bench to sit on. The trees were singing a rustling sway against a gorgeous blue sky filled with moving white billowy clouds as I remembered the nest of baby robins, their tiny yellow beaks stretched wide as their mother fed them. There was that small brown butterfly with hints of orange and a white circle on its fluttering wings flitting from one fuchsia flower to another. In a sunny corner of the pond, pink lotus blossoms rose above bright green pads, stretching up to greet the warmth as a cascading water feature splashed a few feet behind me. Though I was with company, I was in my own world for a few minutes as I printed the moments in my head for future visits.

Before my camera took its moment, I did take some photographs...

... however, it will be the pictures in my mind that remain most vivid.

Sometimes it’s best to just be, so be still and…

keep your peepers open! ®

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

june bloom

keep your peepers open! ®