Monthly Archives: April 2020

On My Walk

These photos were taken last year, while I was walking by the river, as autumn was beginning to claim its tones.

 

I like to photograph different objects within a waterscape, such as the cement block, above, photographed on a walk by the river.  I often feel they give substance to a composition, through textures, tones, and visually.  I find beauty within the simple structures that I see on my walks.  And, as luck would have it, as I clicked the camera, a bird flew into the scene.

This large rock (not large enough to be called a boulder, but larger than your average rock), with its striated markings caught my eye.  I loved its indentations, tones and contrasts.

I came upon another cement block, this one was actually in the water.  I liked the way it captured my attention, sitting there, within the opening of the foliage.

All images and writings are the copyright of Lorri M.

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Sit a While

How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.  -Henry David Thoreau

Sit here, so I may write you into a poem and make you eternal.  -Kamand Kojouri

If you have found a quiet bench in a quiet park and sat down, be sure you had a very profitable day!  –Mehmet Murat ildan

I often lay on that bench looking up into the tree, past the trunk and up into the branches. It was particularly fine at night with the stars above the tree. -Georgia O’Keefe

There’s something very enticing about an empty bench under a tree. And if it’s facing a river, that’s the bench for me.  –Joyce Rachelle

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Irises Blooming

Who would deduce the dragonfly from the larva, the iris from the bud, the lawyer from the infant? …We are all shape-shifters and magical reinventors. Life is really a plural noun, a caravan of selves. -Diane Ackerman

When all the noise is silenced, The meetings adjourned… The lists laid aside, And the Wild Iris blooms By itself In the dark forest… What still pulls on your soul?  -Rumi

I have had more than half a century of such happiness. A great deal of worry and sorrow, but never a worry or a sorrow that was not offset by a purple iris, a lark, a bluebird, or a dewy morning glory.  -Mary McLeod Bethune.

In the Spring a livelier iris changes on the burnish’d dove.  -Alfred Lord Tennyson

The grass he walked through was new and a sweet smell clung to his clothes. There was blue dye on his hands from the wild irises… that the color of the sky was a shade that could never be replicated in any photograph, just as Heaven could never be seen from the confines of Earth.  -Alice Hoffman

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To the Edge of Sorrow

To the Edge of Sorrow, by Aharon Appelfeld, is a profound book, in many aspects.

Appelfeld leaves nothing to the imagination, as far as word-imagery, illuminating not only the physical horrors, losses, and sorrows of war, but also the emotional perceptions, repressions, and ability to forge through each day, second by second, minute by minute, hour by hour.

Jewish partisans struggle from hunger, extreme cold temperatures, living in trenches, life on the run, living in a Ukrainian forest, during World War II. They are adamant about fighting the Nazis.

Judaism is a central theme, within the pages, and how it’s education is part of the partisans’ daily ritual. Whether believers, or not, it is expected that the entire group participates, because their leader is determined that morality will survive the horrors thrust upon them.

Through this daily aspect, some of the group are able to cope better, with their difficult situation.  Others are impacted more emotionally, causing them to reflect on their life, their loved ones, the comforts of home.  The effects, and how each person is affected, is important in the context of the group, as a whole.

The story, with its characters, and depictions, still lingers within me, and will, for quite some time. It is one of those books, that for me, is difficult to let go of.

I have been an avid reader of Aharon Appelfeld’s books. Sadly, this was his last one, as he died in 2018.

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Review: David Plotz’s Good Book

good book

Good Book: The Bizarre, Hilarious, Disturbing, Marvelous, and Inspiring Things I Learned When I Read Every Single Word of the Bible, by David Plotz is an interesting book on one man’s perception after reading the Bible.

Plotz read the Bible beginning as a child in Hebrew class. He read snippets throughout the years. While at a Bat Mitzvah, he began reading passages of the Torah. This fueled the fire that began his journey to read the entire Bible.

He found the Bible to be weird, especially the language and how it is not always cohesive and/or easy to understand.  He was astonished at some of the stories in the Bible that verge on the bizarre with some of their eccentric and archaic content, such as vengeance, murder, stoning, plagues, slavery, and other forms of physical punishment, etc., and especially regarding the nature of G-d.

Plotz’s train of thought is that scholars and religious leaders have made the interpretation and translation of the Bible difficult and hard to understand, and almost an arduous task to do so.  He feels that most religious leaders (of all faiths) have selected certain sections, chapters, quotations, and etc., from specific books of the Bible to fit what they deem is necessary to hold their congregation in tow.

He also feels that every person should read the Bible, because it holds a wealth of knowledge, and also gives Jews food for thought to argue over.  Where Christian faiths hold Jesus as their savior, Jews have had to argue the facets of the Bible with each other, throughout the centuries, not necessarily accepting the words at face value.  Argument is a Jewish tradition.  This has made them stronger, and has given them the freedom to doubt, to believe, and has bound them, historically, as a separate group of individuals.

When Plotz began reading the Bible, he was an agnostic, and wasn’t overly involved in it. When he finished reading the Bible, his mindset had changed.  In order to find out how, read Good Book yourself. You will come away with a deepening sense regarding how other Jews perceive the Bible.

Good Book, by David Plotz is much more than an interesting look at the Bible through one man’s eyes.  It is a journey of faith, understanding, insight and extreme questioning. His interpretations, feelings and thoughts about his journey are frank, filled with harshness and often with extreme humor.  The reader often finds him amused, awed, disgusted, appalled, yet with the desire to continue forward with his reading.  At times he found the stories difficult to understand, and difficult to read due to their horrific content, yet he found much of the Bible fascinating.

This is my second reading of this book, and reread it, once more, for a book discussion.

© Copyright Lorri M. – All Rights Reserved – No permission is given or allowed to reuse my photography, book reviews, writings, or my poetry in any form/format without my express written consent/permission.

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It has been a few days since my last post.  Passover, family gatherings through Zoom, and other activities have taken my attention away from my blog.

I walked around the area, today.  I saw these two yard decorations, in front of the fence, that borders my home, and which I can see from my front door.  A neighbor had put them up in the common area.  I thought they were very inviting.

It is nice that the bit of warmth that we have had the past couple of days (in the low 50s, 60s), gave others motivation to liven up the area.

-Welcome anything that comes to you, but do not long for anything else.  -Andre Gide

-To me a lush carpet of pine needles or spongy grass is more welcome than the most luxurious Persian rug.  -Helen Keller

 

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