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I sometimes think that all works of art are born somehow of fire. Words burn in a writer’s brain, unforgiving until they can spill upon page. Motion burns from the core of a dancer’s muscles. Paintings are licks of flame risen from a spirit through a brush to a canvas. Even in photography, there is a burning peaceful need to capture what is seen by one set of eyes into something that can be seen by others, a sharing of the embers of the photographer’s vision. The center of the earth that we walk on each day is made of fire, and it passes through layers of rock and soil and the skin of the soles of our feet to the center of the souls of our being, and must be expressed somehow.

In this sculpture studio, we found the purest expression of the creative fire, molten iron casually poured by men protected from its destructive power, men looking like creatures from the center of the earth themselves, men who controlled the flow of creativity, channeling it into molds and frames, containing it, shaping it, melding with it, as it fashioned itself through the sculptors hands into art, cold to the touch but still retaining that fire within. As we all do.

It reminded me that art can be dirty and primal and beautiful, full of heat and passion and practicality all at the same time, blending hotly and gently to create an artist’s ever-imperfect vision, for imperfection is the nature of art as viewed by the artist, and what makes them strive to improve always, trying to touch that fiery core with their bare hands, capture it, rejoice in it, and share it.

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Shidoni, Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “I used to know a sculptor… He always said that if you looked hard enough, you could see where each person carried his soul in his body. It sounds crazy, but when you saw his sculptures, it made sense. I think the same is true with those we love… Our bodies carry our memories of them, in our muscles, in our skin, in our bones. My children are right here.” She pointed to the inside curve of her elbow. “Where I held them when they were babies. Even if there comes a time when I don’t know who they are anymore. I believe I will feel them here.” — Erica Bauermeister

Daily gratitudes:
Brief flashes of clarity
Some time with Kelsea
Realizing creative necessities
Water
Beach time soon come

Sometimes, it’s hard to tell, especially when depression shadows you, constantly grabbing for your hand to hold you back. Even when I know the things I need to do to come out from a bout, I sabotage myself by not doing them. Sigh.

IMG_8419Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “When you’re lost in those woods, it sometimes takes you a while to realize that you are lost. For the longest time, you can convince yourself that you’ve just wandered off the path, that you’ll find your way back to the trailhead any moment now. Then night falls again and again, and you still have no idea where you are, and it’s time to admit that you have bewildered yourself so far off the path that you don’t even know from which direction the sun rises anymore.” — Elizabeth Gilbert

Daily gratitudes:
Rabbits
Clean dishes
An empty drawer
Birds flying in formation
The Olympics

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I don’t know if this means it’s a sale on Big Jesuses or if it’s a big sale that encompasses all Jesuses, but either way the sign struck my fancy. I mean, you can’t buy Jesus. He’s way too ethical for that. I don’t actually recall even seeing any Jesuses at this interesting and chock-full shop that popped up on the other edge of Cerrillos Road from Jackalope, which it is trying to resemble. It was worth a stop on the way out of town.

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Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “I thought such awful thoughts that I cannot even say them out loud because they would make Jesus want to drink gin straight out of the cat dish.” — Anne Lamott

Daily gratitudes:
The light smell of rain
A peek-a-boo sunset
Shared experiences
Good books
Clean sheets

The rooftop bar at La Fonda Hotel is scorching in the summer at cocktail time, so they have been most considerate in putting up canopies that shield the sun while unveiling the sky. We have had enough hot in our western world in the month of July, and while I would never expect to hear myself say it, I am looking forward to cooler weather. If I must be hot, then let me be by a beach. Soon.

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Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “We love easily in summer, perhaps, because we love our summer selves.” — John Updike

Daily gratitudes:
The look in MKL’s eyes and reassurance of his presence
Kelsea and early adult heartache
My bracelet from Tam
Random exercise
A suspected new comrade

My fascination with doorways, about which, I’ve written before, continues. I am not the only photographer was a passion for windows and doors, though my passion extends to porches as well. Perhaps it’s the secrets that lie behind those doors, all the life that exists back there, but to which I am simply blind. I do love it when old lace currents hide interior secrets.  That’s how I want my home to be. I have always wanted lace curtains, providing only mysterious and tempting flashes of my inner world. And a romantic touch of balcony merely adds to the dream.

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Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “Always seek justice, but love only mercy. To love justice and hate mercy is but a doorway to more injustice.” — Criss Jami

Daily gratitudes:
The Corazon is back from vacation
Missing MKLThe Great British Baking Show
Plans and dreams
Avoiding the cursing, flailing, screaming homeless man on the corner of Work and Work

Much like we seem to be going through on an individual and global soul level this year, there is a door at the end of a shadowed tunnel, and that door is bathed in light. This is a more pleasant tunnel than I think many of us have wandered down of late, but perhaps you’ll appreciate the concept.

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Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “people themselves are full of tunnels: winding, dark spaces and caverns; impossible to know all the places inside of them. Impossible even to imagine.” — Lauren Oliver

Daily gratitudes:
Finding out that they sell my Red Bull downstairs from work
Holding doors
MKL
Feeling productive
Matusalem

Even though the door is turquoise, my favorite color, the stairs look as if the light of heaven is leading one to the surface…our lives are all about choices, aren’t they?

Since last week’s rant on the Republican National Convention, I’ve been quiet and contemplative, with dreams of having pleasant discussions with Donald Trump as we walked along a lovely beach, which made me feel like I was drinking the Kool-aid. If you’re not of a certain age, you might need to Google that term to understand its sad reference. I’m looking forward to feeling the antithesis of what I felt last week, as I watch the Democratic National Convention. The last few days did not disappoint.

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Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “The first duty of a man is to think for himself” — Jose Marti

Daily gratitudes:
Animal best friends
Box fans
How Tim Kaine is so smiley
My current read
Our talk with the Virginia railroader yesterday at Union Station

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Kokopelli Sunset
Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there’s no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.” — Laini Taylor

Daily gratitudes:
The man talking to his dog as they walked
MKL
Lightning
The stars in Estes Par
Sleep and dreams

It’s been tolerably temperate here in Colorado as Christmas preparations proceed everywhere but my house. I have high hopes, though, of getting my tree this week, and putting out what decorations I have.  Maybe I’ll share those with you as a Christmas countdown. As you might expect, they’re all a little odd, and mostly animal-related. Kelsea comes home on Saturday. Saturday is also the ninth anniversary of my Mother’s death, which makes this week very hard for me on a level deeper than I care to admit. The pain and depression of losing her still lies very close to the surface, and causes me to lose my temper at little things, which is not how I behave anymore. So I re-cracked my healing broken toe kicking the closet door this morning (frightening Mr. Man – I’m sorry, Mr. Man), and cried over my computer password not working. I know I will be better when this week has passed.  MKL and I have a performance of Amal and the Night Visitors (a forgotten childhood favorite) to look forward to on Friday, and a night at the Stanley Hotel to look forward to on Sunday, so pictures will follow. I do hope your holiday preparations are moving right along, and that the spirit of the season eases your burdens and cares, instead of intensifying them. That’s what Christmas is all about, after all.

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Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “Sometimes the hardest part of the journey is believing you’re worthy of the trip.” — Glenn Beck

Daily gratitudes:
MKL
Mr. Man’s forgiving nature
Duct tape
Winter weddings
Blankets

 

It’s so nice to have a Jackalope for the holidays!

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Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Quote of the day: “A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us.” — Franz Kafka

Daily gratitudes:
Having a partner
Dot’s Diner
That Kelsea is here (and that she got a 97 on her Calculus final)
The reviews for Tuscan Whole Milk on Amazon.com
My string of holstein lights

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