Maine Light: A Writer Wednesday Post

September 19th, 2012 | Posted by Irene in Essays

Please note: slightly different layout this week and no sound file because we are traveling–this program is a bit skittish on the road–thanks for your understanding.

How it begins is I want to share the light with you, the light of Maine, which first only seems translatable into breathtaking paint on canvas, canvases which line the gallery walls in compact fine museums here in Maine, a show of Frederic Church in one in Portland. Frederic Church who played the glowing Hudson Valley light by which I live, the Hudson Valley light which falls like a resonating chord, but the light of Maine he paints, and Winslow Homer and Frank W. Benson paint, strikes a clear arpeggio of separate tumbling notes.

By this light I want to share with you rich days of art, made into a perfect latte at Bard coffee in Portland, spun through Longfellow’s boyhood home there, breathing the air of old poetry in the room in which he wrote “Into each life some rain must fall,” flowing through the film “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” a day topped off by a dessert as light and joyful as the whimsy that inspired it: a carrot-cake soufflĂ©–all spicy delight and no heaviness, mascarpone sauce for the cream-cheese frosting, absolutely ethereal.

Blazing through the word-defying light of Maine, the clarity of Rachel Carson, the transformative power of her words and vision honored by marshlands preserved in her name, the light of early preservationists shining on the steep stone steps up Dorr Mountain in Acadia, sparkling into sweat-stung eyes at the summit, this light itself a very lens, magnifying, sharpening, the moment when the optician dials the wheel of lenses and says “How about now?” and you say, “Yes, that’s it.”

Light, art, beauty, nature, true love at your side: the light of travel at her best, by which we see in clarity the multiple channels beauty opens and cascades through, channels up through which our gratitude and joy travel back to Source, helping us hear inner promptings: talk to those people at breakfast, find out what you have to give and give it.






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  • Linda O’Brien

    It sounds like you saw Maine at its’ best. One often thinks that the Fall colors are the Best – but Maine, like all of us, show our Bests when they are ripe.

    • Love that! From one ripe dame to another!

  • MARK

    Dear Irene — Love the descriptive stream of thought and being which you always spin and weave so well… also love the list of folk noted within that I will google and read and follow. Love the descriptions of light and reminded of a Dianne Vreeland autobio where she describes the different places she has lived in the world and the varying changes of energy/ light for each season ( in the same place at different times of the year) as the earth slowly shifts its way north or south … winter or summer and all in between. ‘ Always happy to read a friends happiness skipping on the page — effortless and spinning , running almost out of breath but full of exuberant richness for just simply being alive… the spirit that is you, Irene full and connected to the universal power of the manifest. Thank god you are here !

    The light is shifting here in Michigan and the skies exhibit different shades of blue than those of the Summer .. I walk into our farmhouse and say ” Thomas,is there more light in here? How can there be more light ?” And we both agree it’s the angle of the light / the fall shifting of the earth on it’s axis throwing light at a different angle thru the panes … illumnating shadows and light on the sculpture of Saint Michael — yet still wingless awaiting his feathers to fly…. The sugar beets are being harvested/ huge trucks filled with the harvest barrel down highways to organized gathering places where they are poured mound upon mound — some reaching as high 100 feet. … but it’s the fields , the beauty of the fields with their hundred shades of green and yellow that can make you drive off the road accidentally as you turn your head left or right to be awed by their simple pure color …. just pull to the side of the road and enjoy something as beautiful and inspiring as a Van Gogh landscape
    (Free admission to this museum !)…

    The year is coming to an ” end” and this writer works on his own harvest — willing to cut, harvest, and and store a phrase or two / a melody to share with others harvest on November 24 th … but closing the farm on that final harvest is bittersweet and possibly near unbearable were it not for the memories and the knowledge that the words and music of each art garden planting will continue traveling through the Universe. I think of a machine in the future that will be able to convert the images and sounds as they travel through it— to capture the energy of the past — a “television” to ” reanimate” the past and re-run the images and sounds for anyone to see… from now … to eternity…….I LIKE that idea!.

    • That sounds a lot like our consciousness at play, Mark! Delightful to imagine a new angle of light on the angel of light there in Michigan–what a color sense you have! Anticipating your return–

  • Scott

    Right now I am embarking, in my mind, on Long John Silver’s treasure ship and sailing right up to Maine in my imagination to find that carrot cake. Thank you for the rippling arpeggios you played over Maine’s landscape. In my travels I will remember to talk to people at breakfast.

    • May your treasure be as easily found as the light in Maine!

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