RDS: "With familiarity the profound becomes mundane. With passion the mundane becomes profound."...... Saul Bellow :" A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep." ......MORE PHOTOS @ saunterings.com

Saturday, November 27, 2010


Wispy white brushed upon the blue, wispy white thickens to gray, to cover all the blue. Now the early wispy white thins ever so slight with a tinge of blue showing thinly through.

Looking at a single stalk of seeded goldenrod, dock or even freshly faded frost aster just recently gone to seed is a marvel to behold. Uncountable the seeds developed on even just one and uncountable stalks just within my line of sight. Prolific are the living trying to continue with a legacy, so awesome is the profligacy needed to survive. Also note well that each individual will continue this profligacy for many years, trying to legacy continue.

Go with the flow, an admonishment to be admired perhaps, but passion only just begins when flow becomes agitated.

A subtle drift of air from the east, as gently from the west a wisp of white envelopes blue and dissolves shadows into nothingness. Thinking of photons from the sun dancing or is that waves dancing on the nothingness, sustained only by electro-magnetic self. Clutter fills the mind, clarity floats away as clouds disperse shadows.

The quiet echoes between the ears, quiet are thoughts, no whirr of grinding gears, no vibrating hum of electron gigabytes galore.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Still, so very still, on a weak sun filled November morning. The chill of the black, starlit night stiffens still, all about, frosty blades of grass and still morning breath of air. Few are left the leaves, unmoved in the morning bright, single spider strand dangles pine needle in the calm, only the raucous blue of the jay disrupts the solitude.
Soon waning late sun of fall doubling with a southern influx, will rite the serenity. But as the sun path this late in the year is brief and low soon another black night will still again.

Life’s domestic chores must be done for the season as quiet as the natural world seems. No birds, no squirrels of chipmunks, no rustle of leaves hung from branches, dead calm is the afternoon air, even the bright sun cannot muster enough to disturb the calm. Such is a wan November day as the wait for winter has begun.

Soon bluster and snowflakes will rile the air, gray clouds abound, snow snakes will prowl the roads, and darkness will overwhelm both the mind and the spirit. So low the sun’s zenith it barely tops the trees. Even at the noon hour, shadows are so long they seem as cast from giants.

Again high clouds form in the west, its thin veil broadcasts the change. Fronts buffeting air masses frequently, fall hastens to winter. Late fall becomes the winter before the winter solstice arrives to begin our inevitable and tortuously slow march to spring. Today’s shadows are akin to late January but without the fate.

Even as now I write, gone are the shadows, blue sky and pleasant musings, thin clouds drift in from west to east. Tonight the stars will not twinkle, Orion will hunt unseen behind his cloudy blind, frost will not whiten, yet still is the calm.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Clouds give sight to air, masses drift or storm across the upper atmosphere known only by the clouds that move. So subtle and sweet the many forms of water that envelope our very being, the sine qua non of our existence. Can life’s complex subtleties exist in another realm, say a methane “friendly” world or is the H2O dipole molecule unique?

Liquid, watery sap drawn up hundreds of feet from root to dormant twig to explode into a leafy canopy, all without mechanical moving parts. It’s magic, truly mystical in every conceivable way. Constant life’s current flows liquid and vapor, amorphous forms, rock-like ice given much character by temperature and pressure, by density’s intensity itself!

The strangest fact of life in the entire universe is not life itself but that ice freezes less dense than water. A miracle of miracles as miraculous as can be. A simple fact, quite unique, but the basic fact of life is ice floats!!! And so our living world exists.

Clouds form and float, ice forms and floats!

Clouds form and rain falls, so simple a basic fact, but WHY. What if water vapor was slightly more dense than air, how would water get from here to there?

A distant cloud shadow blues the tree horizon as from the west a weather front advances. Slowly more white than blue, soon late fall sunshine will disappear too and spring in fall will yield to winter’s approach as the week comes to end.

But first a gentle, aimless breeze is developing some character. Swirling first east and then west and now only west, change one could say “is in the air” and in the clouds and inevitable.

Another cup of coffee later quiet again, advance clouds are thinning into drier air just east of here. Distant western horizon clouds thicken, but wind was east and now within minutes from the south, now calm with slight east drift, now south, a little more brisk enough to twirl a few leaves across the way. A quiet coffee morning watching a distant flag, a quiet Sunday morning before winter perhaps begins. Back to flag observing, it is pointing west by gentle eastern breeze, now south but drifting west again, now southerly in bent, but tending west again. The tension is almost unbearable!!!!! But now I must go, my coffee cup is empty and my sunshine is fading fast.

And now I must go home. RDS

Monday, November 15, 2010


Low the late October sun, chill the northern blow that may chill worse than a winter’s blast, trees less of leaves, open vistas long obscured, crowds thin too, not around to view, all the glory of an evening sun at noon. Sparse the leaves, sparser still the crowd, but glorious the mighty falls, the wonder that is Niagara.

Glimpsed through new formed vistas, the river gorge below the falls opens, framed by foliage colorful and still glowing with autumn’s shrubs bared not yet by late fall breezes.
The arch of the Rainbow Bridge and the half-arched Observation Tower become new focal points now the leaves of trees are almost gone. Arches are of course less obtuse than a glaring straight line, and a simple, single tower accomplishes its need while not overwhelming its surroundings.

Once my images would always strive to avoid man-made intrusions, intrusions into the natural world, but now I see they intercede not intrude, are necessary at times to give scale and perspective to the awe at hand.
Today’s chill breeze suppresses the mist of the falls and hustles it towards Canada opening the view on the American side and making the saunter drier and more pleasant.
The torrent, the headlong rush to the brink and frenzied final leap off the edge to froth and foam and white purity freed by power basic, but almost divine, mesmerizes. Standing so close, at the brink, the glorious line between the flow and the chaos, before such force, eternity beckons.

I have always loved to wonder above a waterfall, as the quickening pace of the water’s flow begins its rush to the edge, seemingly oblivious to all the tumult that lies ahead. However, water, unlike the living, emerges unscathed by such chaos, tumult and abuse, for after this horrific ride comes the calm again. Not so us!!

Niagara Falls is split by Goat Island. On the USA side the falls of Niagara is called American, the falls in Canada is called Horseshoe, Horseshoe is obvious, the title American seems only a mere afterthought. The falls called American is more accessible and personable.

Many small “islands” dot the river immediately above the precipice, even if quite small, each supports some woody growth, defying the majesty and awe-someness of the great Niagara. In the spring, I have seen large ice floes rush the scene above the falls that should scour clean each “island”, yet the trees and shrubs still seem to defy and life clings brazenly.

Goat Island, someday destined to be a pinnacle perhaps, as the falls inevitably retreats from that ridge of limestone known as the Niagara Escarpment, divides the great Niagara River into unequal parts, the Horseshoe Falls much larger and dramatic, and the American Falls smaller and accessible.

In the late October season, with no jostling crowds to contend, solitude and piety indulge the moment. A vast force intoxicates, humbles and empowers, universal thoughts collect, time disperses, uniting forever with today. Humbling is the great falls of Niagara!

About the Sauntering Recluse

My photo
Ithaca, New York
Greenhouse operater well-rooted, now branching out. Photo and writing interests now springing from a long term dormancy.



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