If only I could fall
Within the depths of this beauty
In the power of the sun
While the sparks of life
Water has found its way
Into the ant and spider
Into the lizard and toad
It flows unfettered
And becomes the blood of life
Animals fight for dominance
Striving for tethered immortality
Birds sing and call
The din almost overwhelming
The crush of urgency
Hangs heavy in the air
Standing still in this mayhem
With the understanding
That none of it is without purpose
I am awestruck
By these ancient traditions
That flow in river and vein
A couple of years ago, I collaborated with the poet/artist Richard Leach. He allowed me to “respond” to his poem with visuals and sound. Richard is a diverse artist and his poetry can sometimes be whimsical and thoughtful at the same time.
Seven Jungles of Bells can be found in his book At This Time:
For my interpretation, I included photographs from the Hubble Site which are public domain, home studio produced sounds, and NLR video effects chicanery.
Richard also writes blues poetry of which I have made music for over the years. He also creates collage art:
Seven Jungles of Bells from Mark Wade on Vimeo.
Love these little ones.
Their weight is about the same as a penny or nickel.
Wings hum at about sixty times a second!
How does that even work?!
Maybe it’s magic, or some sort of unseen juju.
Maybe they’re fairies from long ago.
Or some sort of reincarnated happy energy.
That found its way to find sweets all day.
Just watch it for a second.
Not too many times we get to witness real magic.
(Backyard vid – 4x slomo)
When the swallows returned in 2019.
My wife Robin is a library tech at two elementary schools. She takes her job seriously, knows all the books and matches readers to these books with great precision. It is a gift and a labor of love for her.
Recently, while a third grade class was visiting her library and checking out books, a boy asked “do you have the book The Human Body?” Robin contemplated a moment …”yes we have it. You need to ask your teacher if it is appropriate for your reading level”.
The lad inquired his teacher and she answered with an absolute “no”. This transaction did not escape notice of another student in the class. It became evident that the “forbidden” book piqued her interest.
A little later, the lass approached Robin with great confidence and with adult eloquence asked “where do I find the book The Human Body?” After twenty-plus years of dealing with thousands of elementary school-aged children, Robin’s intuition kicked in. She understands that reinforcing a manipulative action should never be rewarded.
Robin looked her square in the eyes. At that point they both knew this little sprite was aware that the teacher said “no” earlier. “Divide and conquer” is a ploy the eight-year-old has likely used very successfully in her short life, and now she was testing yet another adult with it.
“We have the book, but it it is not age appropriate for you”, Robin answered. The little girl’s determination drove the question “why”.
Robin said, “If you read it you may have questions for your parents. I’m not sure your parents are ready to have that conversation with you yet.”
The gears quickly turned in the little girl’s head. “What conversation?”, her tone of voice was turning condescending. “About where babies come from”, Robin chimed.
“Oh, THAT conversation” the eight-year old stated with adult-like arrogance. “I’ve had THAT conversation with them and I KNOW where babies come from.
They come from God!”
“Right. Now go ask your teacher if the book is age appropriate”, Robin motioned to the other side of the room.
And that was that.