Random Thoughts from an Unemployed Mind

A Perfect Day for an Island

Late in the spring, one of my students set up this scene depicting his interpretation of Lummi Island. I appreciated it because I used to live there.  As I was going through the photos on my camera I found this perfect place in my past, a quiet day in June, so clear and unhurried, a day to build a dream island in the yard next to the white picket fence.

Grey Building in the Afternoon Rain

I also came upon a picture of this building. I have a passion for decay, especially weathered and dilapidated factories, warehouses and barns. They are huge sculptures of intricate shades and nuances with colors, angles and shadows that I cannot find in newer well cared for buildings. the interaction of nature on the artificial fascinates me. Weather, gravity, and time are the masters of this craft. The fact that someone still works here amazes me.


Yesterday I was listening to a lecture on Thomas Pynchon‘s The Crying of Lot 49 by a Yale professor. As she was talking about the layers that language adds to our experience of life, I could hear my son Jordan’s measured and assured voice in the next room. He was talking  into a phone that connected through waves to someone in a different place. I was distracted by the feeling that what he was saying to that person might be more important for me to hear than what the Yale professor was saying to her class a few years ago. My son is one of the people I truly trust and admire, and I find his interactions in the world fascinating because he is so unlike me.  I had a feeling even before the wordy ideas started to trickle in to my thoughts that I was missing something that I could never hear again, something that might help me get a clearer picture of who he is. This seemed so much more important in that instant than what the Yale professor thought Thomas Pynchon was trying to say. Then the wordy realities crashed in and I was flooded with ideas about how we are constantly bombarded by language in so many layers, the sound of a voice in another room layered over the words of a recorded lecture about a book written over 30 years ago. How do I as a person figure out what layer to focus on? Or is it important to experience all the layers and sort them out as they come? I decided to enjoy the sound of my sons voice while I continued to listen to the words of the professor talk about the words of the author who was writing about how people live with language. I let the layers wash over me. I have not yet sorted it all out, but as you can see I am making a start at adding my layer to the mix.

Poem in “g”

Ragged rage on the page

The angle of an angel

ranges from eight to danger


Caught in a draught

the engineer’s binge

brought the ginger angst

and a plague of cringing

ringing: Ding Dong!

all night a singeing song

Language to light and laugh

through tough straights

though meager wags the wagers

on the ageless eagles bough.

This entry was posted in Art in Nature, capturing light, conversations, discovery and recovery, Family, mindworks, My Art, my life, paying attention, philosophy, poetry, spring, Teaching and Learning, Telling Stories, thinking in words, time travel, Word play and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Random Thoughts from an Unemployed Mind

  1. Lua says:

    Your son sounds wonderful- you’re very blessed to have him 🙂
    And I couldn’t help but notice your descriptions. I’m really not good with writing descriptions but you did a great job creating pictures in my mind!
    Love the poem btw 🙂

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