Sometimes she forgets

Ok, that’s not true, I don’t forget, per se, sometimes I’m just too far away from that which I love and sometimes distance gives you amnesia. Which is a terrible aspect of the human condition.

I *know* the state in which I was raised is beautiful, stunningly so. This past week seeing some photos, familiar photos, but seeing them again brought it all back to me. The wonder, the joy, the melancholy, the homesick.

At Bellagio in Las Vegas, they are having a show of Ansel Adams work.

I run hot and cold on Adams. Some of his stuff just kills me, some puts me off, but I find him to be incredibly talented and master of striking a mood. Plus, as an aspiring amateur photographer, I am utterly stunned by his style and eye.

This particular exhibit had a side room with many of Adams’ personal effects. Family photographs and personal letters were a highlight for me. Learning (and then viewing) his wonder for the natural beauty of New Mexico drew me in all over again. I’ve been a half click off kilter since. Missing my home state this much will do that to me. I have a foot in both my lives. That of a New Mexican and that of this new life (I still call it “new” after almost ten years).

I learned more about Ansel Adams in the two hours I spent at the exhibition. One of the best things I learned is that he was quite a writer. Personal letters to friends and family had me captivated.

A fave quote I took away from that day was from a letter from Adams to Nancy Newhall dated July 15, 1944. In it, Adams is pondering himself and his talents. He creates a whole list of things he’s not. It’s both wry and thought provoking.

He ends the letter this way:

“I am really like those very old headstones in New England – demon angels with X for eyes and perky wings. I ain’t so soft, but I am amusing.”

I keep thinking I should steal that for the tagline of my own life: “I ain’t so soft, but I am amusing”

I like it.

Here’s some of my faves of the New Mexico shots. The ones that drilled right into my bone marrow and made me melancholy until I see New Mexico for myself again.

For those living there today, don’t forget to look out your window at the beauty that’s readily available and give thanks you get to live there. I often neglected to do that. It’s easy to take for granted when it’s there every day.

(These are reproductions found on the web and do nothing to enhance the glory of the actual photographs….)

“Ghost Ranch Hills, Chama Valley, 1937

“Aspens, New Mexico”

Perhaps the most famous, “Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico, 1941 (the audio feature at the exhibit told a great story of how he got this shot. It’s captivating.)

Ok, best to stop staring at photographs and get my maudlin self back to work……

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  • Natalie

    Today we have light winds and nary a cloud in the light-blue sky. There is still just a hint of snow on the top of the Sandias.
    It was, however, cold enough to toss some pinon into the ol’ chiminea for a late afternoon/early evenin’ fire.
    Our resident cuckoo bird (aka Roadrunner) which we have affectionately named, George, was hoping between my roof and my neighbor’s backyard. He’s got this really crazy look in his eyes… One day, I saw him jump into the bushes behind my house and snatch a bird and eat it. I had no idea they were cannibals!
    We have to be very careful and watch our feet when walking through the Petroglyphs because it’s just warm enough for the rattler’s to come out of hybernation and they are very hungry and striking at anything that moves.
    Fiesta de la Albuquerque is this weekend at Tiguex park. Cadillac Bob will be there.
    We are expecting a few storms but nothing significant to put a damper on the book faire downtown tomorrow.
    I’m thinkin’ New Mexico may be missin’ you, too. Why don’t you come home? It’s a great weekend to visit!

  • Natalie

    Um, George was hopping… not hoping; well, maybe he was hoping while he was hopping but that wasn’t necessarily the most apparent thing… he’s still crazy.

  • Karen Fayeth

    My folks used to have a resident roadrunner at their place in Belen. My mom was the hummingbird lady with all manner of feeders. One day my dad observed the roadrunner getting up on the ground air conditioning unit, leaping off and taking hummingbirds on the fly. We also didn’t know they were cannibals then and my mom was giving that roadrunner an easy fast food establishment. Needless to say, she moved the feeders!!

    Yeah, I think I’ll call my best friend in Las Cruces tonight and see about setting up a visit. Was there last in October, so it’s time…………thanks for the word picture of the day. There’s nothing like those clear blue skies…..*sigh*

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