From the pages of my journal
I’m constantly studying the light.
I notice how the light falls across the land, sparkles through the trees and colors the sky. It takes me twice as long as most people to get from A to B, when I drive through the rural countryside. I can hardly drive as I am so distracted. I’m constantly pulling over and getting out of my car with my camera in hand in an attempt to make some record of what is inspiring me.
I find inspiration everywhere. It happened again today. I was just driving along minding my own business when I saw it. “Oh my”, I gasp and took a deep breath. I had to stop. Things like this can not be ignored, at least not by me. This is exactly why I keep a camera in my purse, one just never knows. I pulled my car safely to the side of the road, grabbed my keys and camera and got out. I had to walk a ways before I found the spot again.
Tall grass and weeds brushed across my calves and as I walked a safe distance from the highway’s shoulder, remembering to watch my step so I didn’t tumble down the hillside. “I really should be more prepared. Why don’t I remember to keep better walking shoes in the car or at least bug repellent?” I berated myself. Then I saw it. “Oh yes this is wonderful!” My heart silently screamed in delight. “This is what it is all about”. Click, click, click, click went my camera. This digital stuff is great, not worried about wasting film I can shoot to my hearts content. Thinking I’ve got it, I start back to my car, yet when I have just taken a few steps it happens again. “Oh wow! Click, click, click, click. Okay now, that good.”
Time stands still, as I am engulfed in the beauty which surrounds me. Once again my heart has been lulled by nature’s love song. This time it was the way the morning light danced through a tall patch of native grasses and spindly cattails tucked between a busy highway and rural America, Kansas to be exact. Next time it might be the snaking S pattern of a young crop of soybeans, the golden glisten of a wheat field ready for harvest, or the way the evening light filters through the trees. One just never knows so I am constantly at watch. “Whish, whish, whish”, it’s the sound of cars rushing by. I wanted to yell at all the people to tell them to stop and look. “Can’t they see what I see?” I say out loud to myself.
I get back in my car and head on to my appointment in Kansas City. “Dang it”, I keep seeing things. “How am I ever going to get anywhere like this?” I ask myself as I once again pull to the shoulder. It takes me much longer than anyone else I know to get anywhere, especially, if a rural vista is involved. It really drives me crazy to ride in the car with my husband. He never stops, even when I beg him. So I have to be satisfied with clicking my camera as he whizzes along. Other times I paint. I’m not talking about propping a canvas against the front dash. I just paint with my eyes and my heart. Imagining how I could capture the scene in paint so others could understand and feel as I feel.
~ Debra Clemente
Parking spot for my latest thoughts.