Weekly Photo Challenge: Love

There are hundreds of family pictures I looked through while searching for photographs for this challenge, and other pictures of places and things that fill my heart, and love is such a vast topic that it was difficult to narrow down.

Love is more of an essence, permeating every area of my life, through every cell and fiber of my being, and, in its finest sense, love is beyond example or explanation.  As I looked at the pictures I have on my laptop I’m posting with now, a few hit the center of my heart: one of my mother and I that I took when we were at one of my favorite lakes a couple of summers ago, and one of my son and I at his High School graduation:

meandmom2010

Austen & me, June 2009

*

*

*

© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Daily Prompt: Musical

Michelle W. posted this prompt yesterday, January 26, 2013:

What role does music play in your life?

Having sung since I can remember (and far before that, my mother tells me), music and song are inextricable from my life.  It’s no happy accident that movies are scored, and that specific tones evoke or heighten emotion.  Music has helped me survive loss, and hurt.  Music bolsters my courage, energizes me, and connects me to others.

When I sing, I feel like a separate entity is within me, making beautiful sound come out of me – especially wonderful if I’m feeling ugly in any sense of that word.  Music is that in which the whole is more than the sum of its parts.

I am definitely a rock-n-roll woman, TrainWreck Sept. 22, 2012

although I appreciate many musical genres, and instrumentation.  While I can’t listen endlessly to certain genres, cultural influences, whether regional or global, enthrall me.  Music through the ages and across cultures fascinates me with its many variations and combinations of sound and style.  If you’ve been exposed to music from around the world, you can listen to a piece and likely know what part of the world it’s from, and I find that astonishing.  We bend and re-shape genres more and more these days, mixing old world in with new, in ever-expanding creative expression.

I can be moved to tears, called to action, and filled near bursting with joy – all from one song!  My inner homeland soundtrack includes: America The Beautiful, The Star-Spangled Banner, This Land Is Your Land, and dozens of others, while other country’s anthems and signature songs connect me to people and places I might not otherwise feel any affinity toward.

Music helps us learn, and moves uniquely through our brain.  A fascinating look at this can be found here: This Is Your Brain On Music.  The academic writing and science made it difficult for me to follow some of it because of my learning deficits, but it’s remarkable material and well worth reading.

Beyond the scientific data, we know that music touches us as few other things do.  I find it incomprehensible that there once was a movement to banish music, and some people still believe that music is somehow ‘evil’, and responsible for humanity’s downfall.  Yes, emotions are heightened, but the same thing can be said about prayer, and anytime people gather for a common purpose – with or without music.

To me, music is life.

*

*

*

© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Kit-Cat Klock

kit-cat klock
Kit-Cat Klock (Photo credit: World of Oddy)

KitCat Clock

I bought a Kit-Cat Klock for my son one Christmas, nearly ten years ago now.  He had it hung up in his room, and when we moved, I was happy to see that he put it back up on his wall.  I really like the way its eyes and tail move back and forth, but it’s not the most accurate time piece.  This one is battery operated, but I think the original Kit-Cat Klock was electric.

When my son went to college, the clock remained here, even though I suggested taking it as a memento of home.  I removed the battery and put it with his things that I’m keeping in case he wants it in the future, which I realize isn’t likely, but you never know.  If he ever has kids they might enjoy stuff that was once their Dad’s, or at least having a physical connection from the past to the present.

I was cleaning the other day and saw the clock and decided to dust it off, put a battery in, and stick it up on the wall.  I forgot how much pleasure I take in simple things, and I’m so glad I decided to claim it, and went through the trouble to put it up.

*

*

*

© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Illumination

I had several potential photographs for this challenge and I couldn’t choose, so here they are:

These two are in the town next to mine.  It was a beautiful twilight and the snow had recently stopped.  The illuminated street lights and car lights reflecting onto the snow was so lovely.

Car and street light illumination after snowIlluminated snow and lights Turners Falls, MA

I took a trip to Manhattan this past September and stopped at the Empire State Building, but didn’t go up after seeing the ridiculous $25 observation deck price.  The lobby and interior hallways were good enough for me.Empire State Building Model Sept. 2012Empire State Bldg lobby Sept. 2012 Empire State interior ceiling Sept. 2012This past spring there was a ferocious thunder-storm and I videotaped it with my camera, and this is one of the stills from the video.  I didn’t realize it was that close to me until after I took the film.  The raised hair on my arms told me it was time to go back inside.

May 2012 ThunderstormThe summer before last I went to visit one of my sisters in Rhode Island with some other friends, and we had a great day exploring Providence.Lupine and light Providence, R. I., 2011 Lupine in lights Providence, R.I., 2011The summer before last I also took off to the White Mountains for a day with a couple of friends, and it was one of those glorious June days that you wish would never end.  I’m in the middle.Friends Illuminated in the White Mountains

*

*

*

© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.

Air Waves

I turn on my hometown radio station almost every morning.  I feel comforted hearing the DJ’s voice – a guy who’s been on that station since I was a teenager and the only way to hear the latest songs back then, besides going to see bands, or buying random CD’s to try out, was to listen to the radio.

The station had been family owned since its inception, but was sold, or became managed, by one of the larger market outfits a decade ago, when they tried to make the format more hip by adding a morning talk component with one of the DJs who’s still there, and a guy who did a regular sports spot and was a substitute DJ.  The new format was a clumsy intrusion, and didn’t change their listener numbers.  The format changed back over to the main DJ within a year, I think.  I’m surprised it lasted as long as it did.

I’m glad the station is still there.  I don’t have cable, or get any stations on my television, so I turn to the radio and internet for my news.

This morning I turned on the radio and was transported back to the days of getting my son ready for school, the days before I woke in terrible pain every day, the days that I still wouldn’t trade for today unless I could be a different person.  Nostalgia colors the past in pastels so often.  But my life was harsh in other ways.  I was severely depressed, single parenting, in poverty, and don’t know how I got through, but I’m grateful because now is better, even if still somewhat desolate.  Back then I was assured that life would get better, I just didn’t know it would take ten years…

Radio is quaint now with our smart phones, tablets, and other electronic devices streaming music and video, our mp3 players shutting us out from collective experience.  I don’t have a smart phone and I don’t think I want one.  I think there are going to be a lot of neck problems in a few years, and I know firsthand how youth’s disregard exacts payment later.  I asked my doctor what causes our bodies to break down over such a short lifespan and her answer was: “Walking upright”.

The DJ is bidding his listening audience a good day as his shift ends and signals the shrinking time I have left to get out the door myself.  I realize that tuning into this station most mornings isn’t an unconscious habit, but part of my ancestral drive for continuity – for being part of a collective, even if the mode seems trivial.  It’s this DJ, this radio station, that has barely changed from my youth throughout my adult years.  I moved from Maine to California, and finally ended up back where I started, and that station remained mostly as is while much around me has changed, indeed, while I’ve changed too.

*

*

*

© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.