The Art of Continuing to Look

          Dragonfly Cornucopia (oil on canvas)

I imagine the insect’s eye/brain view and wish it were my own. Consider that kind of complete life focus on voluptuous warm color, a cheek perennially brushed by gentle petals lighter than air.

I am on a local hummingbird’s schedule for roughly one pm’s. It’s not me of course it’s the deep pink tree fuscia with nectar-weighty drooping downward trumpet shaped flowers by my door.

I suppose the hummingbird is driven by instinct toward what is, coincidentally, pretty. Well, we share that, humans and insects. Life shares that. What we can’t do is fly into, hover above, dip and turn within the maze of flowering bush and vine as a dizzying ecstasy overtakes the senses. But insects and birds are orderly, thoughtful…and looking for a meal.

A person drunk with color leaves those very things behind and likely will not care about food in the throes of heightened perception. Our ordinary survival vision, our daily life is functional, and beauty is a treat, a plan made to step aside in order to smell the roses.

If we want enveloping, there are pools below tropic waterfalls, sunsets where the colored air is digestible. We weave textiles of air borne silks and rich brocade, and decorate houses and plant gardens and relish the closeness of beautiful things.   And it suits our bigger plans, to see all we can, to witness and experience a multilayer life that every day expands before us and we reach to touch.

Shared too with animals and birds and bugs and water creatures who, after all, do migrate.  Everyone of us is on the search for something more, beyond what we know. And maybe that’s the life force, that internal push, the secret of being alive, the art of continuing to look.

Sunset and Cypress and Highway One

Last week, headed north driving a friend home, we both suddenly realized that a spectacular was in progress over our ocean. I pulled off the empty highway and we watched the sun sink in one of the

Sunset and Cypress and Highway One

most glorious goodbyes I’d ever seen.

There were close to zero clouds, nothing to catch the brilliant color against wisps and puffs, an empty sky but for that stunning sun. I don’t ever remember seeing that before, no clouds, only the slightest line of fog near the highway. And blazing unobscured sun.

Returning home was equal to it, a night of stars and moon lighting up the ocean, catching white wave tips.

In less than an hour I was at the easel to record the black and green cypress clump just above the beach that framed the orange orb with Highway 1 rocketing in front of it all.