Month: November 2023

A Vision of the End

  1. Things to Do in the Belly of the Whale
  2. From Blossoms
  3. Wild Geese
  4. The Peace of Wild Things
  5. My Gift to You
  6. Departing Spring
  7. The Skylark
  8. What a Strange Thing!
  9. Although The Wind …
  10. The Old Pond
  11. Spring Is Like A Perhaps Hand
  12. Hast thou 2 loaves of bread …
  13. Youth and Age
  14. A Postcard From the Volcano
  15. The Kraken
  16. He wishes for the Cloths of Heaven
  17. There Is a Solitude of Space
  18. Because I Could Not Stop for Death
  19. Mad Song
  20. Answer July
  21. Success Is Counted Sweetest
  22. Hope Is the Thing with Feathers
  23. The Bluebird
  24. A Vision of the End
  25. The Crying of Water
  26. A Rose Has Thorns As Well As Honey
  27. Winter
  28. The Dark Cavalier
  29. There is no Life or Death
  30. Sheep in Winter
  31. To a Snowflake
  32. Sextain
  33. A Crocodile
  34. Sea Fever
  35. The Giant Cactus of Arizona
  36. The Coming of Night
  37. Going to the Picnic
  38. Moon Tonight
  39. A Southern Night
  40. Greenness
  41. Twilight
  42. On the Wing
  43. In Summer
  44. Before Parting Scheduled for 23rd July 2024
Abstract photo of sea waves in tones of dark blue

I once beheld the end of time! 
   Its stream had ceased to be. 
The drifting years, all soiled with crime, 
   Lay in the filthy sea. 

The prospect o’er the recking waste 
   Was plain from where I stood. 
From shore to shore the wreckage faced 
   The surface of the flood. 

There all that men were wont to prize 
   When time was flowing on, 
Seemed here to sink and there to rise 
   In formless ruin blown. 

In slimy undulations rolied 
   The glory of the brave; 
The scholar’s fame, the rich man’s gold, 
   Alike were on the wave. 

There government, a monstrous form 
   (The sea groaned ’neath the load), 
A helpless mass blown by the storm, 
   On grimy billows rode. 

The bodies of great syndicates 
   And corporations, trusts, 
Proud combinations, and e’en states 
   All beasts of savage lusts. 

With all the monsters ever bred 
   In civilization’s womb, 
Lay scattered, floating, dead, 
   Throughout that liquid tomb. 

It was the reign of general death, 
   Wide as the sweep of eye, 
Save two vile ghosts that still drew breath 
   Because they could not die. 

Ambition climbed above the waves 
   From wreck to wreck he strove; 
And as they sank to watery graves, 
   He on to glory rode. 

And there was Greed—immortal Greed— 
   Just from the shores of time. 
Of all hell’s hosts he took the lead, 
   A monarch of the slime. 

He neither sank below, nor rose 
   Above the brewing flood; 
But swam full length, down to his nose, 
   And steered where’er he would. 

Whatever wreckage met his snout 
   He swallowed promptly down— 
Or floating empire, or redoubt, 
   Or drifting heathen town. 

And yet, it seemed in all that steaming waste 
There nothing so much gratified his taste 
As foetid oil in subterranean tanks, 
And cliffs of coal untouched in nature’s banks, 
Or bits of land where cities might be built, 
As foraging plats for vileness and guilt; 
Or fields of asphalt, soft as fluent salve 
Or anything the Indian asked to have. 

I once beheld the end of time! 
   Its stream had run away; 
The years all drifted down in slime, 
   In filth dishonored lay.

Too-qua-stee (1829 – 1909) was an American poet, short story writer, and essayist born in the Cherokee Nation. He was also known as DeWitt Clinton Duncan.


To read more poems, click here.



We’ll Always Have Paris

Close-up of a lion head door knocker in Paris

I was going through my Paris photos and was surprised to see how many door knockers I seem to have amassed. I love architecture and shoot many buildings and details when traveling, so I shouldn’t be surprised. It appears that Paris brought forth the architecture nerd in me, though.

Close-up of a lion head door knocker in Paris

Paris is a haven for architecture lovers, indeed. This is one of my favorite door knockers of all time. I do have a faiblesse for ornate lion heads.

Close-up of an ornamental door knocker in Paris

One more!

If you’re interested in architecture, too, I recommend you read “The Architecture Lover’s Guide to Paris” in preparation for your Paris trip. I used it to plan our time there.

A lion head door knocker in Paris

Surprise: another lion head! I love the distressed look on this one. It sat on a dilapidated building, and as soon as I saw it, I knew exactly how I wanted to edit it.

Close-up of a lion head door knocker in Paris

The light was fading fast, so I only had a little time to experiment. I was also exhausted, having been out and about Paris for the whole day. We were on our way to the hotel, and I wasn’t in the mood for more photos that day, but I couldn’t resist it!


I’m pleased with how it turned out in the end, considering it was a “quick & dirty” job.


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The Bluebird

  1. Things to Do in the Belly of the Whale
  2. From Blossoms
  3. Wild Geese
  4. The Peace of Wild Things
  5. My Gift to You
  6. Departing Spring
  7. The Skylark
  8. What a Strange Thing!
  9. Although The Wind …
  10. The Old Pond
  11. Spring Is Like A Perhaps Hand
  12. Hast thou 2 loaves of bread …
  13. Youth and Age
  14. A Postcard From the Volcano
  15. The Kraken
  16. He wishes for the Cloths of Heaven
  17. There Is a Solitude of Space
  18. Because I Could Not Stop for Death
  19. Mad Song
  20. Answer July
  21. Success Is Counted Sweetest
  22. Hope Is the Thing with Feathers
  23. The Bluebird
  24. A Vision of the End
  25. The Crying of Water
  26. A Rose Has Thorns As Well As Honey
  27. Winter
  28. The Dark Cavalier
  29. There is no Life or Death
  30. Sheep in Winter
  31. To a Snowflake
  32. Sextain
  33. A Crocodile
  34. Sea Fever
  35. The Giant Cactus of Arizona
  36. The Coming of Night
  37. Going to the Picnic
  38. Moon Tonight
  39. A Southern Night
  40. Greenness
  41. Twilight
  42. On the Wing
  43. In Summer
  44. Before Parting Scheduled for 23rd July 2024
A bluebird

A winged bit of Indian sky
Strayed hither from its home on high.

Alexander Posey (1873 – 1908) was an American poet, journalist, and politician in the Creek Nation.


To read more poems, click here.



Favorite Photos: October 2023

  1. Favorite Photos: January 2023
  2. Favorite Photos: February 2023
  3. Favorite Photos: March 2023
  4. Favorite Photos: April 2023
  5. Favorite Photos: May 2023
  6. Favorite Photos: June 2023
  7. Favorite Photos: July 2023
  8. Favorite Photos: August 2023
  9. Paris Is Always A Good Idea
  10. Favorite Photos: October 2023
  11. Favorite Photos: November 2023
  12. Favorite Photos: December 2023
  13. Favorite Photos: January 2024
  14. Favorite Photos: February 2024
  15. Favorite Photos: March 2024
  16. Favorite Photos: April 2024
  17. Favorite Photos: May 2024
  18. Favorite Photos: June 2024
Glowing autumn foliage at Millesgården, Stockholm, Sweden

Autumn has never looked more stunning than at Millesgården. The vibrant colors of the garden are simply breathtaking, and that Lensbaby Velvet 85 lens creates the most delicious blur and bokeh. Can you believe this is a real place?

I usually use my Canon RF50mm F1.2 L USM lens at Millesgården or the Canon RF100mm F2.8 L MACRO IS USM one, but this time, I wanted to test my new toy, the Velvet 85. I bought it for flowers and still-life photos, but I was curious about other images.

All Lensbaby lenses use only manual focus, so it’s best to take lots of photos to make sure you nail the focus – especially when shooting at large apertures, as I do. I love to shoot for the blur, and I usually love F/1.8 to F/2.8, but I noticed that F/2.8 to f/4 works best for me when using a Lensbaby – for flowers.

It turned out that F/2.8 is the only aperture I love for this type of photo. F/1.8 is wonderful; the blur is insanely soft, but it only suits some photos, and getting the focus is really tricky. F/4 and up is fine; it’s pretty easy to focus, but as more of the background comes into focus, some of the magic disappears. Hence, F/2.8.

St. Martin fountain by Carl Milles at Millesgården, Stockholm, Sweden

Another shot from Millesgården. It is such a magical place in the autumn! This is the statue of St. Martin on the lower terrace.

Millesgården was the home of Swedish sculptor Carl Milles (1875 – 1955); he designed and built it, and it is now a museum with Milles’ antique collection, sculpture garden, and art gallery. The garden is inspired by Italy’s Mediterranean gardens, and it’s a work of art in itself. Carl Milles and his Austrian wife Olga, an artist herself, spent the winters in Italy that both loved.

A red squirrel atop a pumpkin

Squirrels! As soon as there are fewer squirrel photos on my Instagram or Facebook accounts, someone will wonder where the squirrels are. Somehow, I became the squirrel whisperer. Not a bad thing when it comes to social media.

This is a photo from last year that I hadn’t processed. I thought it would make a nice Halloween card and processed it accordingly. You can see the card here.

A red squirrel eating a hazelnut atop a pumpkin

Just squirrel-ing around and finding its inner peace, ha, ha!


I had a few pumpkins out in the garden to get some photos for a squirrel Halloween card, but I wasn’t pleased with the images. They were fine, like this one, but didn’t work for a card, so I gave up in the end and used that photo from last year.

Eurasian nuthatch (Sitta europaea)

I love photographing wood nuthatches (Sitta europaea); they usually strike a pose when landing and again before taking off, checking their surroundings. I can always count on them to sit still long enough for me to get a decent photo.


Did you know that nuthatches can forage when descending trees head first? Inveterate hoarders, they store the food in the bark of the trees, then conceal it with moss or small pieces of bark.


I hope you enjoyed these photos; there are more to come next month.


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