Evanescent Images

sit on the rock beside the lake
it’s early in the morning
the fog hasn’t lifted yet

the wind speaks to me:

your work is done for today
you captured images of birds
and you were up there with them
flying as one of them
you felt it
you were part of it
transcendent
you lived in my embrace
outside of your bones
you can’t think of any reason
to go back to the earth

the birds were my hopes
my visions of splendor, my ideals

I captured images of evanescent angels
whose flight trails were rainbows

then as suddenly as the beat of their wings
I lost them
I can’t find them any more
I don’t try any more

the wind knows
how I long to keep the rapture!

the wind commands me

there is only one way
you must do this:

touch the very still water
at daybreak
when the lake is shrouded and wondrous
when the air is cool and sweet
touch the water
leave your body here
fall back thousands of years to simplicity
leave it and fall back
touch the water so gently
stir it slowly
fall into simplicity
fall, and as you do
watch a woman’s face take form in the ripples
her face is luminous, it is real
she calls to you
she wants you to return to her
thousands of years ago
when you were both innocent
when the air was clean and sweet smelling
listen to her
she wants you to return to her time
go to her now
touch the water
touch her image
move closer to it
don’t be afraid
fall back
touch it
enter it

 

BECOME.

 


“The world is continually proclaiming these words: Beware, I am evanescent, and so are all my outward appearances and colours. Take ye heed of the changes and chances contrived within me and be ye roused from your slumber. Nevertheless there is no discerning eye to see, nor is there a hearing ear to hearken.” (Baha’u’llah )

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Hear Me, ye mortal birds!

slb07angelasrealizationvar2 Baha’u’llah wrote:

Hear Me, ye mortal birds! In the Rose Garden of changeless splendor a Flower hath begun to bloom, compared to which every other flower is but a thorn, and before the brightness of Whose glory the very essence of beauty must pale and wither. Arise, therefore, and, with the whole enthusiasm of your hearts, with all the eagerness of your souls, the full fervor of your will, and the concentrated efforts of your entire being, strive to attain the paradise of His presence, and endeavor to inhale the fragrance of the incorruptible Flower, to breathe the sweet savors of holiness, and to obtain a portion of this perfume of celestial glory. Whoso followeth this counsel will break his chains asunder, will taste the abandonment of enraptured love, will attain unto his heart’s desire, and will surrender his soul into the hands of his Beloved. Bursting through his cage, he will, even as the bird of the spirit, wing his flight to his holy and everlasting nest. — Bahá’u’lláh, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh

birdcageTo consider that after the death of the body the spirit perishes is like imagining that a bird in a cage will be destroyed if the cage is broken, though the bird has nothing to fear from the destruction of the cage. Our body is like the cage, and the spirit is like the bird. We see that without the cage this bird flies in the world of sleep; therefore, if the cage becomes broken, the bird will continue and exist. Its feelings will be even more powerful, its perceptions greater, and its happiness increased. In truth, from hell it reaches a paradise of delights because for the thankful birds there is no paradise greater than freedom from the cage. — ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions

Thankful, the birds of the spirit seek only to fly in the high heavens and to sing out their songs with wondrous art. — ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Selections from the Writings of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

Light Birds (video)

lightbirds Sanctify thy heart, illumine thy soul, and sharpen thy sight, that thou mayest perceive the sweet accents of the Birds of Heaven and the melodies of the Doves of Holiness warbling in the Kingdom of eternity, and perchance apprehend the inner meaning of these utterances and their hidden mysteries.
— Bahá’u’lláh, Gems of Divine Mysteries

Those evocative words superimposed on one of my bird photographs from Golden Gate Park open my first ever video. The images are set to music with “Bird,” a track from Susan Lewis Wright’s album of the same name. I provided the photographs for the album’s first and back covers. You can find the album here.

birdalbum

View my four-minute video on YouTube. My purpose in making this short video was the same as my purpose in making all my photographs and digital media paintings. The Purpose is always to point to the ultimate Creative Word as revealed by a Manifestation of God. In this age that Manifestation is Bahá’u’lláh.

In the words of Joseph Campbell:
Behind all these manifestations is the one radiance, which shines through all things. The function of art is to reveal this radiance through the created object.

I rejoice to hear that thou takest pains with thine art, for in this wonderful new age, art is worship. The more thou strivest to perfect it, the closer wilt thou come to God. What bestowal greater than this, that one’s art should be even as the act of worshipping the Lord? That is to say, when thy fingers grasp the paint brush, it is as if thou wert at prayer in the Temple. – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

Light Bird’s web page.

Color is all. When color is right, form is right. Color is everything, color is vibration like music; everything is vibration. — Marc Chagall