Saturday, March 19, 2022
|Anemone blanda 19 March 2022|
Fragmentary Blue - Robert Frost
Why make so much of fragmentary blue
In here and there a bird, or butterfly,
Or flower, or wearing-stone, or open eye,
When heaven presents in sheets the solid hue?
Since earth is earth, perhaps, not heaven (as yet)—
Though some savants make earth include the sky;
And blue so far above us comes so high,
It only gives our wish for blue a whet.
Los colores de Jorge Luís Borges
There was this cute and very small blue flower in my back
lane garden. Where possible I have attempted to keep Rosemary’s garden going. I
like to scan some of these for my memory bank. I had no idea what the plant
was. My daughter Alexandra had an inkling. But because of the recent rains the
flowers remained firmly closed. Today Saturday there was morning sun. They opened! I cut
them and scanned them. But what are they? On my way to Southlands to see if the
folks there could ID the flower my daughter called telling me that the blue
flower is an Anemone blanda. She was right as in Southlands it was confirmed.
At some point I will be unable to replace all of Rosemary’s
plants with new ones. Her garden, our garden and now my garden is a string of
memories that haunt me. Perhaps they will dissipate a tad come May when our
roses will be in bloom.
I believe that Robert Frost’s Fragmentary Blue defines to perfection why for Rosemary her
favourite colour in the garden was blue. It was only later in our joint gardening
that she began to accept red, orange and yellow.
An Unhurried View of Erotica
Friday, March 18, 2022
“What is pornography to one man is the laughter of genius
to another” D.H. Lawrence – Quote in book referenced below.
A few days ago my visiting friend from Portland, Curtis
Daily and I went to Don Stewart’s treasure of a used books store, Macleod Books. As usual I could not leave without at least one book under my arm. The
book in question cost me $15. It has the title An Unhurried View of Erotica and
it is special to me for two reasons. Before I buy any book I like to look at
the first paragraph. It passed the test. Second, how many of you reading this
know of any book on erotica not having one single photograph or illustration?
And besides having not only an introduction and a preface,
the book inside had an interesting extra title inside – To the Further
Liberation of Man’s Healthier Instincts.
I simply could not resist. The book has a long explanation
of Ovid’s book on erotica called the Art of Loving which had him banned from
Rome. Ralph Ginzburg introduces the mention of Ovid’s book with, “The Art of
Love was first to set the stage of Gallantry [capitalized by author] into
This paragraph also
convinced me to buy the book, “ Before we proceed further, however, it is important to state
here that the word “erotic” is used in this treatise with its broadest possible
meaning, that given by Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary: “Of, relating to, or
treating of secual love.” This is admittedly, and excessively broad definition.
But no truly satisfactory definition of erotica (and/or pornography or
obscenity) has ever been devised. The concept is entirely too objective.”
I have my own definition of pornography. Pornography is something in good taste. In my past photographic endeavours I have attempted pornography or steered into that direction. I always pulled back because I believe I have a semblance of good taste.
Furthermore in my idle time I have specialized in exploring my view of what is erotic and have asked a few of my female subjects to give me their take on what is erotic to them. One of my female subjects had an interesting answere to my question.
Wha is erotic?
After many years of this I have gained one fact - women have better imagination for the erotic than men (or at least this man).
This man finds the photograph obove of my friend Leslie as quietly erotic. Would that have something to do with good taste?
A Charm Invests A Face
Thursday, March 17, 2022
I have borrowed for the title one of my fave poems by Emily Dickinson A charm invests a face.
vulg. cara, y este del gr. κάρα kára 'cabeza', 'rostro'.
1. f. Parte anterior de la cabeza humana desde el principio de la
frente hasta la punta de la barbilla.
Del lat. rostrum 'pico1',
Del it. ritratto.
I have photographed at the very least 600 beautiful women
in my photographic life not counting the countless photographs I have shot of
my Rosemary, daughters and granddaughters. And I am not considering female lawyers,
female actors and politicians.
Because I am bilingual (a bit more since I speak both an
Argentine Spanish and a Mexican one) I like to think of words in both English
and Spanish. As a portrait photographer (I buy postcards when I have the urge
to shoot a landscape or a sunset) my fascination has been always with the face.
I marvel how two eyes, one nose and one mouth (and perhaps two ears) can have
such a variety and how I never tire at looking at faces.
On a rainy and cold Vancouver afternoon I like to go
through my files to look for a face photograph I may have overlooked in the
past. Because I live alone with two cats and I am 79 I have, I believe, time to
waste until oblivion beckons.
So Spanish for face is cara and the best
on-line dictionary around, I believe, is that of the Real Academia Española (RAE), it informs
me that the word comes from the Vulgate Latin cara and that from the Greek kára
which means head.
This is interesting if you think of flipping a coin. In
English it is heads or tails. In Argentina and in Spain it is cara or cruz
(cross) and in Mexico because it involves a very Mexican coin it is Águila o
sol. The one peso coin used to have an eagle on one side and the sun on the
Returning to the RAE the definition for that lovely
synonym for cara in Spanish rostro I was amazed to find out that the word from
Latin means snout.
Retrato (portrait) is from the Italian rittrato.
As a portrait photographer I have long known that what I
think I see in a person’s face is usually what the person wants me to see.
There is then no real accurate portrait. Even if you shoot a person unawares
the face is only a coating of the soul or spirit.
Perhaps I can one day persuade Bard on the Beach Artistic
Director Christopher Gaze to pose for me and with tight face shots I want to
suddenly say, “Hamlet,” “Romeo”,”or “Lear.” Could he pull it off ? I think he
can. How about,"Lady Macbeth?"
All the above is a prelude.
mediev. praeludium, der. del lat. praeludĕre 'preludiar'.
It is a prelude of a portrait I had not noticed until
today that I took of my often photographic subject Salem who in the last
century I photographed for 5 years.
A Charm Invests A Face
By Emily Dickinson
A charm invests a face
The lady dare not lift her veil
For fear it be dispelled.
But peers beyond her mesh,
And wishes, and denies,
'Lest interview annul a want
That image satisfies.
More Emiy Dickinson
Yellow she affords
The mighty crocus
A glee possesseth me
Twere Thanksgiving Day
A Slash of Blue – Emily Dickinson