From Humans of New York: Stories, p. 408: "The eye doesn't see. The brain sees. The eye just transmits. So what we see isn't only determined by what comes through the eyes. What we see is affected by our memories, our feelings, and by what we've seen before." So what do you see in these images from the camera's eye, recorded in mid-December, before the snow fell?
The next photo provides a behind-the-scene view of the photo above.
On December 19, I spent the morning at Pathways Retreat Center, hosting the Day Away for spiritual directors. Here are some of the patterns, colors, and sights that caught my eye as I walked the labyrinth. Or my ear -- I heard the geese flying overhead while I was focusing on the small gray feather caught on a dried stem.
On a frigid snowy late December evening, I am enjoying the green of moss and lichens on an aging tree near one of the Pathways labyrinth, from photos taken less than ten days ago, when the temperature was in the 40's instead of the teens.
Late afternoon sunshine on one of the last days of November inspired a quick trip down to the DeFries Calendar Garden. This time my eye was caught by strong lines, intriguing backlighting, and reflections.
It may be a limited palette, but I enjoy the patterns and repeating shapes in these November photos.
I am grateful for a morning at Pathways Retreat Center last week, on a day with sun and shadow taking turns, leaves and milkweed seeds dancing through the air and snagging on other plants, grasses tossing in the wind, and green moss growing serenely on old branches.
Before November and all the leaves leave us, here is some interplay of light, color, and patterns from this past month.
When I walk the labyrinth at Pathways, each time the same winding path takes me in to the center and out again. But each time is a new experience, shaped by weather and season. On this mid-October day, milkweed provided a reoccurring theme. Early on I saw seeds packed tightly together. As the morning warmed, the pods opened and seeds were picked up by the breeze, blowing across my pathway, shimmering with light, and getting caught in grasses and other dried plants.
Just as the leaves were starting to change, I hosted a retreat morning at Pathways Retreat Center. There was time to walk the labyrinth in its early fall garb -- a few dried grasses and plants, some bright greens and reds, and the textured rock at the center. It's a delight to look back at this brilliantly sunny day on a very wet, gray November afternoon.
"Instructions for living a life:
Tell about it."
Mary Oliver in "Sometimes"
I've taken on a prayer practice of looking for the moments of light in each day, whether actual or metaphorical, and then writing or posting photos of what I find.