New Mexico Part 1. Earth at its best

How can there be so much depth in such a small radius, in winter? Layers upon layers seemingly still, but shifting . The landscape spoke with a sly chuckle, “can you keep up?!” I screamed back through the silence, "I’m up on my toes and down on my knees, looking!” Not with my voice, but with my shutter. With my hands touching the frosty ground in the shadows and, just steps away, a warm rock in the sunlight.

Rachel
I met her.  So long ago I had almost forgotten.  Familiar was the feeling,  more important than  Forgetting  She was familiar.  A long-legged bug on the ground.  Giggles  Another memory sparked, resurfacing joy shared.  Then  Now  Cold white under metal foot.  Crunching  Toes curling, holding onto warmth. Fearing the opposite.  Her hands clenched in pockets for the same.  Warmth  A gold crown celebrating aging, almost forgotten.  Until strangers smiles, sparked ours.  And we remembered.

I met her.

So long ago I had almost forgotten.

Familiar was the feeling,

more important than

Forgetting

She was familiar.

A long-legged bug on the ground.

Giggles

Another memory sparked, resurfacing joy shared.

Then

Now

Cold white under metal foot.

Crunching

Toes curling, holding onto warmth. Fearing the opposite.

Her hands clenched in pockets for the same.

Warmth

A gold crown celebrating aging, almost forgotten.

Until strangers smiles, sparked ours.

And we remembered.

poetryHeather Brincko
Wreath foraging and making

Sure there are places you can go with tables that have all the tools and piles of shrubbery, but - in my opinion - finding your own way (and stumbling a bit) is so much more fun! I especially love trampling through the forest/garden to find clippings, gathering twigs etc and finding other winter treasures (like the glowing orange fungi below!!!)

Anyhoo, below are some clues for wreath-making from this non-professional. Good luck and have fun on your adventure!!

Found glowing up from a dark, soggy stump! OOOOOH :)

Found glowing up from a dark, soggy stump! OOOOOH :)

awsy_2018-1-5.jpg
We found GOOOOOOOOOLLLLLDDDD!!!!! :)

We found GOOOOOOOOOLLLLLDDDD!!!!! :)

Also, glowing from the darkness!!

Also, glowing from the darkness!!

Ok, on to wreath construction:  Supplies: Something to cut with (official clippers would probably work better), something to bang down the spikes (I tried pliers, hammer worked better), tree and plant cuttings (seek out little bits of color. Dead stuff looks good too!), wreath frame with spiky things.  Warning: Do not wear soft soled slippers for this activity. Ouch!!

Ok, on to wreath construction:

Supplies: Something to cut with (official clippers would probably work better), something to bang down the spikes (I tried pliers, hammer worked better), tree and plant cuttings (seek out little bits of color. Dead stuff looks good too!), wreath frame with spiky things.

Warning: Do not wear soft soled slippers for this activity. Ouch!!

Make two types of bouquets. Theoretically, you’re supposed to keep this pattern, but I always forget what I’m doing and the world does not end.

Make two types of bouquets. Theoretically, you’re supposed to keep this pattern, but I always forget what I’m doing and the world does not end.

Lay bouquet 1 diagonally facing outward from the frame. Hammer down the spikes to hold it in place.

Lay bouquet 1 diagonally facing outward from the frame. Hammer down the spikes to hold it in place.

Lay bouquet 2 diagonally facing inward. Hammer down spikes. Repeat all the way around.

Lay bouquet 2 diagonally facing inward. Hammer down spikes. Repeat all the way around.

Prayer Petals

A week after my Aunt passed away, I found myself on Harstene Island with a heaviness. It felt like I was standing in a muddy hole. Not a deep one, but my body was so heavy that I couldn’t climb out. It was dark and damp. Moving was the only way out. It wasn’t easy, but I took a step and I picked up a rock, then a leaf, some grass. I looked up and saw roses. I reached for one, cut it, and put it in my pocket. I grabbed another. A thorn left a small scratch on my arm. Ouch. I started noticing more things. Bright green moss. Curly reddish brown - my favorite color - madrone bark. Things started to feel less dark. I dumped them out on a bench, organized them and then just… started moving things around.

How to make art with nature:

Step 1: Go for a walk. Gather some shit (not literally. leaves, rocks, sticks, dirt etc…)

Step 2: Move shit around while thinking of (choose one of the following or insert your own)

  • Someone you miss

  • Someone you love

  • A feeling

  • A problem

  • Nothing at all

Port Angeles Nest

I used to look forward to smores when camping, but now it’s this. Intuition switches on and, like a magnet, the forest provides materials. They bend and shape as if it’s what they were made to do. Sometimes they snap, flip, fall. That’s part of the fun and challenge. This took me all day and I returned to it at different times of day to admire shifting light and shapes. Ahhhhhh. I can still feel the sense of accomplishment even though I left it behind weeks ago. This one reminds me of the gigantic spider sculptures by Louise Bourgeois and that makes me smile a lot.

A path untraveled...

Is now traveled….

I had passed the trailhead no less than 2,000 times and not gone up. Today was the day. The first day of Fall. I grabbed a gorgeous pal and headed up the trail with my camera. We found lots of treasures. A fort with an old chair and underwear in it (hhhhrrrrrrrmmmm), gems in the form of Rainier beer cans shining from dark crevices, glowing seed pods and much more. Beauty - even in trash - all around.

Toe Jam

See that little black fuzz on the floor? My favorite pair of socks decided to disintegrate all over the house at a family photoshoot on Sunday. Somehow we decided it was "toe jam" and played with it for over an hour; jamming it in between toes, tossing it in the air, hiding it in pockets, in hair, giving it funny voices, making it jump around.  We laughed so hard. This type of play is pretty much my favorite thing in the whole world. Not to mention, it made for some amazing photographs. It doesn't take much, folks!