Everything Is Built On Sand
Saturday, March 05, 2016
está construido en la piedra. Todo está construido en la arena. Pero
debemos construirlo como si la arena fuese piedra.
Jorge Luís Borges
Nothing is built from stone. Everything is built on sand.
But we must build it as if it were stone.
The Mosquito Net
Friday, March 04, 2016
'If you'll take my advice you'll get a needle and cotton and start
right in to mend the mosquito net,' she said, 'or you'll not be able to
get a wink of sleep tonight.'
The Trembling of a Leaf - W. Sommerset Maugham
A New Phase?
Thursday, March 03, 2016
In this month of March (a waning month of March) I have
been giving much thought as how my given of always having had a darkroom is now
in the past. I have a new Canon Pro-1 inkjet printer but I have yet to connect
it to my computer or to figure out how to run the drivers.
But this colour negative of my friend Shelina that I took
a few months ago and scanned as a colour negative and then reversed in Photoshop
shows that the result is most interesting. And the only way to hard copy it is to
print it with an inkjet. There is no physical negative (the manipulated one)
to print in a normal wet darkroom.
I am now realizing that this marks a new beginning (or phase
to use that word so overused by local building contractors when they promote
their condo developments) for me. Perhaps it will be an exciting one.
Shelina the graceful
Shelina May 14 2015
Salem & Hosta montana 'Aureomarginata'
Wednesday, March 02, 2016
Until I sort of transferred my interest to old roses I
was known in Vancouver as the Hosta Man. I must have amassed around 400 of
them. In our recent move I had to play botanical Noah’s ark.The best of my
large blue or green hostas went to the UBC Botanical Garden. I kept the ones
that had the faces of my friends who hybridized them. And of course I brought
with me Hosta ‘Captain Kirk’.
With the gardening explosion of the 80s and 90s we are now
faced with an interest in patio roses for condos and maintenance free concrete
I remember those many hostas with a fondness that I would
show to my friends. Particularly in May the emerge fresh and crisp and look
their best. Most of my hostas in our little deck garden are in pots. I am
curious how they will thrive (which they will) with the more light we have here
One hosta I will not see is the one her posing with her friend
(and mine, too) Salem. She may have been one of the sweetest women I ever met.
The hosta in question is Hosta montana
Salem got married some years ago and the last I heard she
was a mother. I miss that smile and I miss the crispness of that Montana.
To A Cat
Monday, February 29, 2016
I lost three friends in 2015 and I have more or less
accepted it and moved on. I miss my friend Sean Rossiter because we talked
about airplanes, beautiful women and architecture. We both had a fondness for
the exotic dancers we had met in our past.
I miss Howard Houston because we talked (on Skype as he
lived near Austin) or emailed on such esoteric stuff as Julius Caesar or
fishing. He taught my Rebecca to fish when we visited him in Texas a few years
back. Both of us had attended St. Edward’s High School. I was a boarder and he
was a day student.
I miss Mark Budgen because he was a strange English man
with whom I traveled on assignment to Peru, Uruguay and Argentina. My godmother/first
cousin in Buenos Aires called him Marx because of his leftist views.
I can re-live conversations I had with the three of them
in my head and I can hear their voices including Howard’s Texas drawl.
Paradoxically I have not been able to rest and stop
grieving the loss of my 18 year-old female cat Plata. She died a couple of
months before our final move to Kitsilano. When she was not doing too well I
told my 13-year-old granddaughter Lauren that one way or another Plata was
going to move with us to the new house. Lauren immediately understood. Plata
died in the middle of the night and I placed her in a shoe box. In the morning
I brought her to our new house and buried her in our little fern walk. I miss
her terribly and when I look at the above picture I am met with complete
silence. There is no conversation. Our shared moments were in silence but she
did make a strange noise when she was being fed.
I miss walking around the block in the summer with her
and my two granddaughters. I miss having her sleep at my feet. I miss her alert
eyes. I always kept asking Rosemary, “Can she think? What is she thinking
A friend told me that I can deal with the death of human
friends and relatives but not so well with someone who utterly depended on me
for her existence. Could that be it?
A Un Gato – Jorge Luís Borges
No son más silenciosos los espejos
furtiva el alba aventurera;
bajo la luna, esa pantera
es dado divisar de lejos.
indescifrable de un decreto
te buscamos vanamente;
remoto que el Ganges y el poniente,
la soledad, tuyo el secreto.
condesciende a la morosa
de mi mano. Has admitido,
esa eternidad que ya es olvido,
de la mano recelosa.
tiempo estás. Eres el dueño
ámbito cerrado como un sueño.
To A Cat – Jorge Luís Borges
Mirrors are not more silent
nor the creeping dawn more secretive;
in the moonlight, you are that panther
we catch sight of from afar.
By the inexplicable workings of a divine law,
we look for you in vain;
More remote, even, than the Ganges or the setting sun,
yours is the solitude, yours the secret.
Your haunch allows the lingering
caress of my hand. You have accepted,
since that long forgotten past,
the love of the distrustful hand.
You belong to another time. You are lord
of a place bounded like a dream
|Family with Polilla (left) and Mosca (right).|