Light, as a feather

Lee_Light Feather 2018
unfixed photographic print of a feather – gift from Summer Lee

How seeing depends… opacity, clarity… foggy horizons between tumultuous sea and sky…

Light, as a feather – the dawn in darkness, or the hoping carrying despair.

What is seen, then?  What fore- or back- grounds an image?  How?  In mist, in motion.  In a dream that waking brings.

In which direction, grounding?  And wherefore?  Lightness limning itself again, again, in midst of darker swells and slighter traces.

How seeing depends… on light, the eye, the stimmung – the stemming of mood – and graver swirls… beg-ins and sets-out from.  Within.  Without.  Finding curious concord.  Even when there’s barely there.  Either.

Deepens, depends, opens out, away, in deep ends, hollow holing, turbulent tunnels, seeing unseen, a groping for/in light where none.  Peering is something, as the closing of the eyes – telescopic blindfold.

Perhaps dawn is down, where despair is rising.  Hope precipitating beyond eithers, or… differences imperceptible save the seeing…

How seeing depends… and deepens with what is searched for, what wants, who opens,  what feels, within each where-when, becoming there-thens, seeing how.

It begins, then, all seeing, between.  Bounding back-forth in light and light and any weighted things, ever shifting seeing-sea and emptied sky, re-membering differences to seamlessness, with opaque clarity, as such your “I.”

Lee Letter 2018
Text included with photograph – Summer Lee 2018

Context : Space

Nested Scenarios…

Gibson - Perceptual Systems


So in the beginning was a context.  In this case the context is words, and you, the screen or paper, the molecules filling distance and your apparatus of perception.  The kind of being you are and the sorts of matter – ink, bits, paper, code, air, eye, flesh, neurons, etc… and what results.

The scenarios are endless.

And always many.



could say – you (as a scenario) and

world as a convergence of particular scenarios


Squirrel scenario.  Grass.  Breeze scenario.  Soil.  The scenarios of Marriage.  Tree scenario.  Ear.  Language scenarios.  Thought.  Memory scenarios.  Emotion.  Pencil scenario.  Keyboard.  Spiritual scenarios, movement, national scenarios, weather, (and so on…and so on…perhaps not so much nested as meshed and interactive – untold scenarios interacting…compoundly conditioning the scenario that we as individuals provide)

excepting not in those/these terms

the area of the angles

(arms, knees, uneven radius and circumference of heads – it doesn’t matter – it will change in a moment…even less than…)


What is wanted now is silence

and the blusteriness of persons

You always take a thing

and its other

to see what happens

as much as she is

no one

is sweetness and light

so now we sleep


we just have to


to be tired

Perceptual Systems

Our 80/20 Vision and Rememory

“Nothing’s like anything else in the long run.

Nothing you write down is ever as true as you think it was.”

-Charles Wright, “Lost Souls”-

Rememory is just a thing we do when we “need” it – or, for reasons that aren’t really rational at all – we seem to feel we do.  In other words, our experience (what our organism, our little assemblage of cells, lives through) works in us like nutrients that our neuronally connected organs (even smaller collectives of cellular functional troupes) select predictively – as probable perhapses – to aid our survival in each moment.

That it’s always subject to change, often flatly incoherent, or dreadfully inappropriate to any given situation proffers no guilt or dishonor – could we really expect accurate predictions of unforeseen and total novelty with infinite contingencies each next moment is?

We do the best with what we have.  After all, we’re not even able to use our tools intentionally – they work on automatic algorithms we are not aware of unless there is a problem.  Scientists might use machines and fabricated contraptions or instruments to measure and calculate “experiences/experiments” – something semi-controlled, devised and arranged in a lab.  We, on the other hand (scientists included), do not have access to our controls (of which there really aren’t any – just meticulously interconnected and recursively interactive meshworks) – our controls (or rather, effects) result in their humming along.

Ah, rememory, refraction – there whenever we need it (or think/feel we do, or hadn’t even sensed it) – and never to the point but that we make it so – experiencing piecemeal fragments the system spits out in relation to itself and its environment, and puzzling them together as if encountered in the world – using them like stencils or frames through which to assess our surrounds.

What a tricky treat!  Phantasms of deconstructed digestions floating a stream, plucked willy-nilly by impulsory triggers and collaged onto a canvas called Perception.  Howdy-do!  When 80% of the show is our relation to ourselves, it’s no wonder we feel criticized!  (for a sensory example – here’s a breakdown of what influences what we see….):

Vis Path 3

– from Maturana and Varela, The Tree of Knowledge

Each of us with our 80/20 view on the realms between – the worlds we share – it’s no wonder we’re ill at ease arguing agreements.  I’d have to ask my sons to calculate the potentials, but even from my 80+20 it’s infinitesimal – our shot at “sharing a moment” as we say.

Hanson brain

-from Rick Hanson, Buddha’s Brain

Perhaps to some Turing machine, or deep-distance galaxy view we’d look like a calibrated system, but the contingencies and unknown variables all changing with each changing change surpass even the weather…

So go on rememoring and adapting your stories, just keep in mind the bric-a-brac you’re rummaging in and it’s exponentially altering situation and experiencing states (by the millisecond), and consider offering those with and around you something in the neighborhood of 80% benefit of your doubt (your self-generated POV)!?

“I give you mine [dreams] for the same reason,

To summon the spirits up and set the body to music.”

-Charles Wright, Lost Souls-


Set Screens

for Friday Fictioneers, March 15, 2013.

Copyright - Lora Mitchell

With age I come to see more clearly, through glaucoma and the cataracts.  Each layer beamed away, burning holes in cloudy veils.  Colors hardly remembered, bright edges that the world lends.  All that glitters can’t be told.  Even my hearing improves, as if long years of practice had taught me how to listen.  The paper of my skin whispers pages’ sound.  Dying’s process of deletion, dropping memories like scales.  Surgery after surgical procedure – removing the lens, installing; expanding tubes, constricting; bypassing and shunting – internal edits increasing my awareness that I’ve no idea how deep my set screens go.  I am yet to see this world, through the versions that I’ve filmed.

N Filbert 2013

Among the Leaves

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Suddenly I found myself among the leaves, diffuse as light, but darker.  Almost a shadow, if I’d found myself at all.

For it came of a simple moment in-between.  Between responding to this or fetching that.  Perhaps waiting for coffee to brew, or just breathing.  In cold sunlight.  In kitchen.  It had something to do with my daughter.  Or she was the first one I told.

“I’ve found myself,” I burst upstairs and explained, holding out my phone which had captured the image like communication.  “I’ve found myself, see?”

But no one quite did.  I was thereby forced to point it out.  Which is a lot more like making something up rather than discovering.  More like envisioning than recognition or taking notice.

Yet I can tell you I saw right through it in that gap.  Made out my identity in that fluster of sunrays and blockage.

An insubstantial sort of silhouette designated by a drove of other things – that “it” – that ephemeral, vacuous “me.”

In fact, the way I remember it, I was harried by flickering thoughts, responsibilities, and a mantled dose of tired, and it was only morning.  I’d backed up against the steely sink and weighted my palms, hoping my neck might loosen by letting it drop.  The floor there.

Something alerted me – a “honey?” or a child’s announcement from some other room – and so I swung and hoisted toward action.  My roving eyes sniffed at calendar and began steadying toward a list comprising my future, but instead.

Instead, a patterning of leaves translating immediately to a scatter-shot messaging of light, exposing some presence in its midst that was absorbing or otherwise deflecting.  Signifying, nonetheless.  A kind of tracing of a head, a photo-graph I guess, a contour drawing by our prominent star.  And if light could trace it, could scribble a quick sketch out of me, well then,

I’d guess I’d found myself among the leaves,

which went something like these pages.

N Filbert 2012

What once was here

What once was here.

Talk about “prompting” photos!  If there aren’t thousands of stories in photos like these…the eye, the mood and the technique combine to provide worlds to discover and invent.  Thankful for this work.