Thursday, June 20, 2013
Mowed for no one, this farmstead, and yet there’s an aesthetic working, one I appreciate. The owner, I understand, is a well-known former basketball coach for a local high school. He keeps the place nice. I look at the traces of his presence all around.
He lets the elderberry bloom around one old outbuilding. For the birds? For wine?
I don’t know, but I’m grateful for the lacy spray of buds that will mature to flowers, then to red-purple fruits that birds love.
There hang the Concord grapes I’ll eat come late fall. They saved me last September when I was thirsty and tired. So sweet, ichor to a runner miles from home. They and the well with its water tasting faintly of iron got me home again. I cleaned the grapes up, unashamed. Nobody else was using them. A possum might object, however.
We move on to the big barn, the one I photographed in a March snowstorm. He’s left clumps of ferns at the front, and I smile at the aesthetic operating; that, unlike some country folk on a mission to clean, he spares these lovely plants as he whacks his way around the building’s perimeter.
I smile again at the hulk of a door, twisted and collapsed, that serves no useful purpose, but is somehow allowed to hang in space from its tired hinges. It’s part of the landscape now, and he cleans up around it and leaves it be.
A golden-backed snipefly rests on a blue spruce. What a lovely fly. There have been many this spring, most of them mating, little F-16 bombers making more bombers.
I can’t wait to see the barn interior in summer light. It does not disappoint. I’m fascinated by the lush glimpses of the outdoors I get through its jagged broken siding.
I can ask the iPhone to focus on the trees outside, just by touching the screen on the area of interest. Try that with any other automatic camera. That feature alone makes it an indispensible companion on my runs. No. Don’t focus on the grass. The bug. I want the bug. Or the newt, or the toad, the mushroom, the blossom. I find myself vainly poking at the screen on my point-and-shoot Canon G-12, wishing it would serve my needs as well as my little phone does.
In a comment on my last post, Donna said that famed photographer Annie Liebowitz, when asked what kind of camera to buy, replies, "iPhone." Yeah. Its major virtue? Being with you all the time.
This blog is brought to you by an intense mix of old-fashioned romanticism and modern technology, applied in a thin layer over Nature herself.