Thursday, December 20, 2018

leaf raking

“It is pleasant to walk over the beds
of these fresh, crisp, and rustling leaves.
How beautifully they go to their graves!
how gently lay themselves down and turn to mould!
--painted of a thousand hues, and fit to make the beds of us living."

~ Henry David Thoreau, Autumnal Tints.

Two months ago, I wrote about the arduous project I needed to take on, to be able to stabilize this blog, preserve more than twelve years of work, and have the peace of mind to continue here. Specifically, it's been the major, systematic process of my retro-conversion of all my photographs from "the 'Bucket," to this server. Essentially, I've been kicking away the 'Bucket! Well, now about nine weeks on, I've completed the recent ten years of work, working backwards from the most recent- leaving me two years' worth of writing still to go. I'm almost done. And so is the autumn season, which is a beautiful time of the year, here in northern New England. Amidst this blog re-con and strenuous fulltime employment, I found bits of time to photograph outdoors- and certainly to journal-write. There are many burgeoning themes, which I've had to hold back during these recent months. But I'll get there, and the accomplishment of stabilizing my work will provide an energy of its own. I'm looking forward to this!

At this writing, autumn has but a few hours remaining, with the winter solstice at the doorstep. Green leaves steadily gave way to red and bright yellows.

Then, in a few rapid weeks, the progressively colder winds between inland mountains and the Atlantic loosened the leaves. I watched a great many feather their ways into local streams and rivers.

Leaves I saw wafting into nearby rivers- the Presumpscot, the Kennebec, the Saco, and the Androscoggin, along with shortened days and snows bring me to turning the leaves of books indoors. There are always new studies to find in well-forested libraries.

Along the journey, reading and writing are ever in tandem. Occasionally, I'll make my own notebooks- just to my tastes: about an A5 size and paper without lines.

Words continue to waft, even through complex and time-consuming projects. Liminal seasons, such as autumn, generate quiet energy reminiscent of the dormant woods in winter.

Persevering with notebook and camera, a new year awaits. The only appealing direction is to go forward.

Thanks so very much to all who have been faithfully reading. The rebuilt sections are gradually outnumbering the portions I still must rebuild. I'm raking plenty of leaves, preparing the ground for new growth. A blessed Advent and New Year to one and all.


Joe V said...

That sounds like a grueling task, converting you years of images to a new server.

I like you handmade books. Have you considered a tutorial series of blog articles on basic bookbinding for us amateurs? I'd love to learn a bit of it.

Bill M said...

Good to hear of your success with your project.
Beautiful photos. The covered bridge reminds me of growing up. The a flood came along and washed all but one away.

Hope you have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Mike A. said...

Lovely photos that are much appreciated by this transplanted New Englander.

Please photo journal your journey creating your own journals. Would be a worthy project for us that still those things called "ink pens", pencils and typewriters.

Robert Burdock said...

Sir, I'm a long time lurker but I wanted to break cover to let you know that I find your writing to be truly astonishing. Bravo for all you do, and thank you for all you share. And may 2019 turn out to a year that far exceeds all your expectations. I look forward to sharing in your journey.
Warmest regards,

lissa said...

I do like seeing how the leaves change colors, wonderful photos.

may you have a joyous new year.

ViorelAgocs said...

Happy and prolific new year!

speculator said...

Thanks so very much, everyone.
As of New Year's Eve, I've retro-converted 1/3 of the way through 2007; that means I'm nearly done (having worked backwards)!

Alex W said...

@speculator -

I just wanted to say how much I've appreciated your thoughtful writings and beautiful photography over the years. I realize how much work it is to maintain a blog. Please keep writing and posting. As ^Robert Burdock^ said, "Bravo for all you do, and thank you for all you share."

Anonymous said...

What kind of paper do you use in your journals when you make them yourself? It looks excellent.

speculator said...

Again- thank you so very much for your kind comments!
The re-con is just about done, and I'm excited to be back on the rails with new writing and images.

As for paper for writing, I like to use Permalife paper which is flexible and archival.