Block title

Work Samples

It was their business to put them into the ground to hide them cleverly

American planes full of holes and wounded men and corpses took off backwards from an airfield in England. Over France a few German fighter planes flew at them backwards sucked bullets and shell fragments from some of the planes and crewmen. They did the same for wrecked American bombers on the ground and those planes flew up backwards to join the formation. The formation flew backwards over a German city that was in flames.

We do not grow absolutely

We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative. We are mature in one realm, childish in another. The past, present, and future mingle and pull us backward, forward, or fix us in the present. We are made up of layers, cells, constellations. Anaïs Nin

Misalignment.jpg

The great majority of us are required to live a life of constant, systematic duplicity. Our health is bound to be affected if, day after day, we say the opposite of what we feel, if we grovel before what we dislike and rejoice at what brings us nothing but misfortune. Boris Pasternak

What is the world magic that nudges me to take notice of this peculiar tree on this perfect night?

I am a dreamer. I know so little of real life that I just can’t help re-living such moments as these in my dreams, for such moments are something I have very rarely experienced. I am going to dream about you the whole night, the whole week, the whole year. Fyodor Dostoyevsky White Nights

Share:

About joseph

Baltimore City

Joseph graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology in 1983, and has since been based in Baltimore, 3 miles from his birthplace. Joseph has shown his work in many local venues, as well as at Denise Bibro Gallery, the Woodward Gallery, and the Edward Carter Gallery in NYC. Joseph was awarded a Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Awards in 2007, 2009, and 2012, and is a 2007 Black Spider Award Nominee and his photographs are found in the following collections: The Lancaster Museum of... more

Lately What Preys On My Mind

This year, after 30 years, I stopped exhibiting my photographs in formal gallery settings. It was a deliberate choice I made to reduce the expense and carbon footprint of my art practice. Instead, I made extensive use of social media platforms to exhibit my work, one image at a time, paired with extended captions, selected from my readings and occasionally my own writings. As I had hoped, my productivity greatly increased. So much so, that I was able to dedicate all ten galleries to a single body of work.

While my practice stretches back to the film/darkroom era, for the last 15 years I have worked primarily in digital media, and for the last three years a significant amount of iPhoneography, while incorporating iPhone apps into my usual Photoshop tools. Future exhibitions of my work will surely be presented in a digital format via high-definition screens, which will allow for me to expand into moving imagery. Experimenting with video has just begun and will likely be further developed in 2019 upon acquisition of appropriate funding and tools.

My interest in imagery from the natural world continues to inspire and motivate me. Rock, water, and wood still seem inexhaustible subject matter, and in particular, trees. I’m obsessed with them, and have been for decades. My desire to photograph trees has taken me to the four corners of the contiguous United States, and even into British Columbia. I’ve no doubt this work would take me further abroad with adequate funding. There are a number of species of interest to me in Africa, Indonesia, and Japan that I would like to photograph.

My earliest photograph were made in a black & white, in a traditional darkroom practice. This was no accident. Until the arrival of state of the art inkjet printing, working in color photography was expensive and difficult to control with any precision. Commercial photographers like me often relied on commercial photo labs and their technicians to convert our color film images to paper. The results were very mixed, and most photographers making art needed the kind of image control that could only be realized in personal darkrooms.

Digital photography was introduced to me in the mid-90’s, but it was rather primitive and held little interest to me. Like many, I thought it would develop much more slowly. I had fully intended to use my traditional photographic darkroom skills for the remainder of my creative life. In truth, my very first computer was given to me by concerned colleagues who had observed my typewriter still on my desk and in use in 1999. They found a modest, but still working Apple computer left for the garbage collector in an alley way, rescued it, and left it on my desk in my darkroom with a sticky note bearing the words, “Joe, we wanted you to join the 20th century before the 21st arrived.” Such a Luddite was I then.

For me, digital photography became a professional imperative in 2004. There was no getting around it, digital photography was the new paradigm, and a steep learning curve lay before me. But the technological leaps also re-energized color photography as an expressive medium like never before, and suddenly vast uncharted expressive oceans appeared before me, which I navigated via dead reckoning, like many other photographers already in their forties. Today my state of the art darkroom and traditional film cameras have all been abandoned. Replaced by digital cameras, computers, subscription software and Iphones. These are my expressive and commercial tools now.

What has not changed is my subject matter, and my desire to create landscape-inspired photographs. But now my images are generated in DSLRs and iPhones, and instead of a darkroom, I have Photoshop, Snapseed, and a host of other softwares and apps to process raw images from my iPhones and cameras, often manipulating colors, forms, and compositions intuitively and moving back and forth frequently between computers and cameras and iPhone apps.

The extended captions/titles have a long history, as have the anthropomorphic gestures in my “environmental tree-portraits”. I find myself attracted to the unusual and asymmetrical subjects, particularly in pairs and groups. Having spent half a lifetime lurking into forests, stalking up mountain trails, and wandering through desert terrain, I find myself seeing and thinking of trees as sentient beings living in a parallel universe, and imagining all the familiar human conditions in their lives.

I’ve noted several clear advantages to having trees model for me. In general, they are more than willing. I honestly can’t recall the last time I got turned down. Unselfconsciousness rates high for me, plus they’re relatively quiet, and very patient, holding poses for hours at a time. Happy, even eager to change their colors with the seasons, and even forgoing their clothing altogether, even on cold, windy days. Unfailingly accommodating to re-shoots and do-overs. And all for free. Who could ask for more?

The words that I pair with my images are strategically chosen and placed to lay only so close as to leave a space, like a synapse, between image and text that the viewer can attempt to leap across, thus creating a synergy between the two, a semi-directed visual experience. And because these image/text pieces are shared on Facebook and Instagram individually, there becomes a natural point de départ for interactive audience participation in the comment sections inherent to these platforms.

In 2015, I came across a craft artist who made her work from recycled wood that she embroidered with yarn. The work was almost childlike in its innocence and simplicity. I was charmed by the refreshing naiveté of the work, and I loved the tactile authenticity of the materials, but when I returned to my studio, and I looked at my framed photographs on my walls, trapped in their wooden and glass mausoleums, I felt sad. I wanted to experience and share my work like my friend’s, without the barrier of glass and the detachment of the frame. This led to experimentations in a similar presentation, my photographs directly mounted to wood, with no frame, and no glass. I sensed an immediate loss of commodity value in my new “product”, which alarmed and annoyed me, but I also felt liberated from the banal conventions of the more serious and “professional” presentation that had always and forever diminished my enjoyment in looking at prints.

Of course, my friend was evolving too, eventually moving into stop-motion animation using only found materials around the farmhouse where she lived. Suddenly her process was entirely ephemeral, existing only as pixels, shared exclusively online. The costs of her production amounted conveniently to near zero, which was well-aligned with her consumer values, as well as her income at that time. As I was struggling financially with my current production practices, I decided to give pixels a try as well. That was three years ago, and I have since discovered my new practice allows for a maximum production at minimum expense. I still spend plenty of money on travel, but now I can travel more often, produce more work, publish it spontaneously, and share it with a much wider audience than ever before.

They following images were all produced and published in 2018

  • take up some god damn space

    ....we live in a society of “can’ts” and “shouldn’ts” and “sorrys” rather than “fuck yeses” and “hell yas” and “fuck NOs” all I have to say to women is this one simple thing take up some god damn space you’re amazing perfection the Rolls Royce of the world women everywhere you’re worth it without Maybelline telling you so you deserve to linger when you’re ordering coffee you’re allowed to take a breath before you make everyone’s day take an hour to decide what you want to wear take a lifetime to choose a mate you’re allowed to stutter in yoga class if it’s pushin
  • No one can know in advance how and where the night will come

    We don't need to retire to a cloister or the desert for years on end to experience a true dark night; we don't even have to be pursuing any particular "spiritual" path. Raising a challenging child, or caring for a failing parent for years on end, is at least as purgative as donning robes and shaving one's head; to endure a mediocre work situation for the sake of the paycheck demands at least as much in the way of daily surrender as do years of pristine silence in a monastery.
  • Piety is a discipline of the will through respect

    Piety is a discipline of the will through respect. It admits the right to exist of things larger than the ego, of things different from the ego. Richard M. Weaver Ideas Have Consequences
  • I remember wondering, to be always together, yet forever apart?

    Dusk is such an illusion. The sun is either above the horizon or below it. And that means that day and night are linked in a way that few things are, there cannot be one without the other, yet they cannot exist at the same time. How would it feel, I remember wondering, to be always together, yet forever apart? Nicholas Sparks
  • they taught was that no one was ridiculous or bad or disgusting

    I think about my education sometimes. I went to the University of Chicago for awhile after the Second World War. I was a student in the Department of Anthropology. At that time they were teaching that there was absolutely no difference between anybody. They may be teaching that still. Another thing they taught was that no one was ridiculous or bad or disgusting. Shortly before my father died, he said to me, ‘You know – you never wrote a story with a villain in it.’ I told him that was one of the things I learned in college after the war. Kurt Vonnegut Slaughterhouse-Five
  • Maybe there were things I saw as ugly that other people thought were beautiful

    I daydreamed a lot about the sycamore tree, too, which at first I thought was because I was feeling melancholy. But then I remembered how my mother had called the sycamore a testimony to endurance. It had survived being damaged as a sapling. It had grown. Other people thought it was ugly, but I never had. Maybe it was all in how you looked at it. Maybe there were things I saw as ugly that other people thought were beautiful. Wendelin Van Draanen
  • there is no Leader; there is no Guru; there is no Master, no Savior

    Here is a fundamental question: is life simply a torture? It is, as it is; and man has lived in this torture for centuries, from ancient times to present day, in agony, in despair, in sorrow; and he never seems to find a way out of it. Therefore he invents gods, churches, all the rituals, and all that nonsense, or he escapes in other ways. What we are trying to do, is to see if we cannot radically bring about a transformation of the mind. Not simply to accept things as they are, nor revolt against them.
  • only on the condition of humility and reverence before the world that our species will be able to remain in it

    We have lived by the assumption that what was good for us would be good for the world. And this has been based on the even flimsier assumption that we could know with any certainty what was good even for us. We have fulfilled the danger of this by making our personal pride and greed the standard of our behavior toward the world - to the incalculable disadvantage of the world and every living thing in it. And now, perhaps very close to too late, our great error has become clear.
  • face the challenge of change

    One of the great liabilities of history is that all too many people fail to remain awake through great periods of social change. Every society has its protectors of status quo and its fraternities of the indifferent who are notorious for sleeping through revolutions. Today, our very survival depends on our ability to stay awake, to adjust to new ideas, to remain vigilant and to face the challenge of change. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • It's a still life watercolor Of a now-late afternoon

    It's a still life watercolor Of a now-late afternoon As the sun shines through the curtained lace And shadows wash the room And we sit and drink our coffee Couched in our indifference, like shells upon the shore You can hear the ocean roar In the dangling conversation And the superficial sighs The borders of our lives And you read your Emily Dickinson And I my Robert Frost And we note our place with book markers That measure what we've lost Like a poem poorly written We are verses out of rhythm Couplets out of rhyme In syncopated time And the dangled conversation A

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • the power of the world always works in circles

    You may have noticed that everything the Native American does is in a circle, and that is because the Power of the World always works in circles, and everything tries to be round….. The Sky is round, and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball, and so are all the stars. The wind, in its greatest power, whirls. Birds make their nest in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours…. Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing, and always come back again to where they were.
  • Ghosts of old things creep into his consciousness

    There is a time in the life of every boy when he for the first time takes the backward view of life. Perhaps that is the moment when he crosses the line into manhood. The boy is walking through the street of his town. He is thinking of the future and of the figure he will cut in the world. Ambitions and regrets awake within him. Suddenly something happens; he stops under a tree and waits as for a voice calling his name. Ghosts of old things creep into his consciousness; the voices outside of himself whisper a message concerning the limitations of life.
  • places were much more reliable than human beings

    I told the students that they were at an age when they might begin to choose the places that would sustain them the rest of their lives, that places were much more reliable than human beings, and often much longer-lasting, and I asked each of them where they felt at home.
  • Pooh, promise you won't forget about me

    "'Pooh, promise you won't forget about me, ever. Not even when I'm a hundred.” Pooh thought for a little. “How old shall I be then?' “Ninety-nine.” Pooh nodded. 'I promise'" A.A. Milne
  • progress in degeneracy

    Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid.
  • my greatest fears have been realized

    Thousands of people who have had their lives dramatically altered by sexual violence have reached out to share their own experiences with me and have thanked me for coming forward…At the same time, my greatest fears have been realized—and the reality has been far worse than what I expected. My family and I have been the target of constant harassment and death threats. I have been called the most vile and hateful names imaginable. These messages, while far fewer than the expressions of support, have been terrifying to receive and have rocked me to my core. Dr. Christine Blasey Ford
  • The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion

    When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.” Henri Nouwen Out of Solitude: Three Meditations
  • shifting the blame from the power elite to those they oppress

    Those who fail to exhibit positive attitudes, no matter the external reality, are seen as maladjusted and in need of assistance. Their attitudes need correction. Once we adopt an upbeat vision of reality, positive things will happen. This belief encourages us to flee from reality when reality does not elicit positive feelings. These specialists in "happiness" have formulated something they call the "Law of Attraction." It argues that we attract those things in life, whether it is money, relationships or employment, which we focus on.
  • one side of it

    You figure out one side of it - the human side, say - and the eternal side goes into shadow. Or vice versa. It's like the old saw: What does a dragon in its shell look like? Well no one can ever tell, for as soon as you break the shell to see, the dragon is no longer in its shell. The real disaster of this inquiry is that it is in the very nature of evil to be secret. Gregory Maguire Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
  • in defiance of all that is bad around us

    To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness. What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives. If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something.

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • memories are bullets

    Memories are bullets. Some whiz by and only spook you. Others tear you open and leave you in pieces. Richard Kadrey Kill the Dead
  • Dissimulation

    Dissimulation, secretiveness, appear a necessity to the melancholic. He has complex, often veiled relations with others. These feelings of superiority, of inadequacy, of baffled feeling, of not being able to get what one wants, or even name it properly (or consistently) to oneself — these can be, it is felt they ought to be, masked by friendliness, or the most scrupulous manipulation. Susan Sontag Under the Sign of Saturn
  • Even the clouds get in on the the quirky

    I do love Northern California. You can order your omelet with avacado and tofu, and they won’t call the police. Even the clouds get in on the the quirky
  • casualties of the primitive rules of competition

    There are people who make a complete and utter mockery of 'democracy' and 'equality' - they're the casualties of the primitive rules of competition which run our society, and the welfare state keeps them just barely alive. And that’s all. Michael Palin Diaries 1969-1979: The Python Years
  • the shelter of this standing stone

    Traveling west from Petaluma to Point Reyes, I came across this lone oak tree that had probably sprouted from the shelter of this standing stone. I could well imagine this fellow enjoying significant protection from the powerful westerly winds coming off of the Pacific, at least until it reached some level of maturity. Wouldn’t it be nice if everybody experienced this kind of security during their most vulnerable years.
  • the deep interconnectedness I longed for

    My glorification of independence and individualism made me and easy target for the myth of meritocracy, and overshadowed what in my heart I knew to be true: the deep interconnectedness I longed for with family, friends, colleagues, and even strangers is core to human survival. Interdependence is our true lifeblood. Debby Irving, Waking Up White: And Finding Myself in the Story of Race
  • addictive poisons and corrupting entertainments

    The darkest secret of this country, I am afraid, is that too many of its citizens imagine that they belong to a much higher civilization somewhere else. That higher civilization doesn’t have to be another country. It can be the past instead—the United States as it was before it was spoiled by immigrants and the enfranchisement of the blacks. This state of mind allows too many of us to lie and cheat and steal from the rest of us, to sell us junk and addictive poisons and corrupting entertainments. What are the rest of us, after all, but sub-human aborigines? Kurt Vonnegut Bluebeard
  • When we don’t use our talents to cultivate meaningful work, we struggle

    As it turns out, it’s not merely benign or “too bad” if we don’t use the gifts that we’ve been given; we pay for it with our emotional and physical well-being. When we don’t use our talents to cultivate meaningful work, we struggle. We feel disconnected and weighed down by feelings of emptiness, frustration, resentment, shame, disappointment, fear, and even grief.” Brené Brown The Gifts of Imperfection
  • a country where everyone lives in fear

    Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear." Special Message to the Congress on the Internal Security of the United States, August 8, 1950 Harry S. Truman
  • just believing that I belong where I am and deserve to take up space

    It’s a struggle for me to remain open, and not shut down because I’m feeling defensive or scared or maybe my ego is getting in the way. And the other side of that is just believing that I belong where I am and deserve to take up space. I fight constantly between those two things, between not apologizing for what I want and staying vulnerable and creatively supple and not thinking I know better than everyone else. Amy Poehler

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • I must keep in good health and not die

    “There is no sight so sad as that of a naughty child," he began, "especially a naughty little girl. Do you know where the wicked go after death?" "They go to hell," was my ready and orthodox answer. "And what is hell? Can you tell me that?" "A pit full of fire." "And should you like to fall into that pit, and to be burning there for ever?" "No, sir." "What must you do to avoid it?" I deliberated a moment.... “I must keep in good health and not die.” Charlotte Brontë Jane Eyre
  • commonwealth

    A proper community is in practice a commonwealth: a place, a resource, an economy. It answers the needs, practical as well as social and spiritual, of ALL of its members - among them the allowance to need one another. The answer to the present alignment of political power with wealth is the restoration of the identity of community and economy. Wendell Berry Racism and the Economy The Agrarian Essays
  • Night, beloved. Night, when words fade and things come alive.

    Night, beloved. Night, when words fade and things come alive. When the destructive analysis of day is done, and all that is truly important becomes whole and sound again. When man reassembles his fragmentary self and grows with the calm of a tree. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  • memento mori

    “All photographs are memento mori. To take a photograph is to participate in another person’s or thing’s mortality, vulnerability, mutability. Precisely by slicing out this moment and freezing it, all photographs testify to time’s relentless melt.” Susan Sontag So true. When I came back the next morning this behemoth driftwood was nowhere in sight.
  • indoctrination

    Ideally, what should be said to every child, repeatedly, throughout his or her school life is something like this: 'You are in the process of being indoctrinated. We have not yet evolved a system of education that is not a system of indoctrination. We are sorry, but it is the best we have manifested thus far. What you are being taught here is an amalgam of current prejudice and the choices of this particular culture. Even a cursory glance at history will show how impermanent these must be.
  • May you recognize

    May you recognize in your life, the presence, power and light of your soul. May you realize that you are never alone, That your soul in its brightness and belonging connects you intimately with the rhythm of the universe. May you have respect for your own individuality and difference. May you realize that the shape of your soul is unique, that you have a special destiny here, That behind the facade of your life there is something beautiful, good, and eternal happening. May you learn to see yourself with the same delight, pride, and expectation with which God sees you in every moment.
  • Where are the cartographers of human purpose?

    But where are the alternatives? Where are the dreams that motivate and inspire? We long for realistic maps of a world we can be proud to give to our children. Where are the cartographers of human purpose? Where are the visions of hopeful futures of technology as a tool for human betterment and not a gun on hair trigger pointed at our heads? Carl Sagan Pale Blue Dot
  • wrong for us in just the right way

    We’re all seeking that special person who is right for us. But if we’ve been through enough relationships, we begin to suspect there’s no right person, just different flavors of wrong. Why is this? Because we ourselves are wrong in some way, and we seek out partners who are wrong in some complementary way. But it takes a lot of living to grow fully into our own wrongness. And it isn’t until we finally run up against our deepest demons, our unsolvable problems—the ones that make us truly who we are—that we’re ready to find a lifelong mate. Only then do we finally know what we’re looking for.
  • We are those scars that we hide

    We are the stories and incidents that we never tell anyone. We are the thoughts that we have standing under the shower. We are those memories that won't let us sleep at night peacefully. We are those words that we will never say to another soul. We are those scars that we hide, from everyone. We are those little secrets. We are everything that we hide. Akshay Vasu
  • when no destination comes to mind

    to be a cloud assuming any shape and in turn, every form for now, this one and now that one but not for long now another and still another endlessly shifting edgeless and drifting aimlessly shamelessly when no destination comes to mind

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • Engraven Tree

    I found this nature-made pictograph embellished from a tiny crack on an old gravestone. I’m guessing a tree lover was laid to rest here a very long time ago.
  • God didn’t create fences

    God didn’t create fences for us or boundaries to contain our nationalities. Man did. God didn’t draw up religious barriers to separate us from each other. Man did. And on top of that, no father would like to see his children fighting or killing each other. The Creator favors the man who spreads love over the man who spreads hate. A religious title does not make anyone more superior over another. If a kind man stands by his conscience and exhibits truth in his words and actions, he will stand by God regardless of his faith. If mankind wants to evolve, we must learn from our past mistakes.
  • yearning for and resisting joy

    I had watched the sun blaze and in the blink of an eye slip away; the happiness I felt in that moment was a heartbeat from tipping to sadness at the knowledge that I couldn't hold it forever. My old familiar push-pull, my trademark yearning for and resisting joy. Sarah Combs Breakfast Served Anytime
  • this body was not mine

    The day my mother died I wrote in my journal, "A serious misfortune of my life has arrived." I suffered for more than one year after the passing away of my mother. But one night, in the highlands of Vietnam, I was sleeping in the hut in my hermitage. I dreamed of my mother. I saw myself sitting with her, and we were having a wonderful talk. She looked young and beautiful, her hair flowing down. It was so pleasant to sit there and talk to her as if she had never died. When I woke up it was about two in the morning, and I felt very strongly that I had never lost my mother.
  • because no one owns anyone

    No one loses anyone, because no one owns anyone. That is the true experience of freedom: having the most important thing in the world without owning it. Paulo Coelho Eleven Minutes
  • caught in an inescapable network of mutuality

    All this is simply to say that all life is interrelated. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality; tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. As long as there is poverty in this world, no man can be totally rich even if he has a billion dollars. As long as diseases are rampant and millions of people cannot expect to live more than twenty or thirty years, no man can be totally healthy, even if he just got a clean bill of health from the finest clinic in America.
  • freedom involves attention

    The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day. David Foster Wallace This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, about Living a Compassionate Life
  • intermixing

    Through love, tribes have been intermixing colors to reveal a new rainbow world. And as more time passes, this racial and cultural blending will make it harder for humans to side with one race, nation or religion over another. Suzy Kassem Rise Up and Salute the Sun
  • Spring would soon come again

    Meanwhile, Spring would soon come again, and with it the outpourings of Nature. The hills will once again splash with wild flowers; the grass and trees will become an altogether new and richer shade of green; and the air will once again become scented with fresh and surprising smells -- of jasmine, honeysuckle, and lavender. Dalai Lama XIV, Freedom in Exile: Autobiography of the Dalai Lama
  • I want to be and not be ashamed of simply being

    I want to see the world without explaining away its mystery by calling things wicked, righteous, sinful, and good. I want to erase in myself the easy explanations, the always mendacious explanations about why things happen the way they do, and in this way, come to know the mystery of being–-not by any approximation in thought, but by actually being. I want to be and not be ashamed of simply being. Therese Doucet A Lost Argument

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • It’s you I like

    There’s a neighborhood song that is meant for the child in each of us, and I’d like to give you the words of that song right now. “It’s you I like, it’s not the things you wear. It’s not the way you do your hair, but it’s you I like. The way you are right now, the way down deep inside you. Not the things that hide you. Not your caps and gowns, they’re just beside you. But it’s you I like. Every part of you. Your skin, your eyes, your feelings. Whether old or new, I hope that you remember, even when you're feeling blue, that it’s you I like. It’s you, yourself, it’s you.
  • The American Dream betrayed even those who achieved it

    The American Dream betrayed even those who achieved it, lonely in their overtime careers and their McMansions, narcotized to the ongoing ruination of nature and culture but aching because of it, endlessly consuming and accumulating to quell the insistent voice: “I wasn’t put here on Earth to sell a product.” “I wasn’t put here on Earth to increase market share.” “I wasn’t put here on Earth to make numbers grow.” We protest not only at our exclusion from the American Dream; we protest at its bleakness.
  • The state of interbeing

    The state of interbeing is a vulnerable state. It is the vulnerability of the naive altruist, of the trusting lover, of the unguarded sharer. To enter it, one must leave behind the seeming shelter of a control-based life, protected by walls of cynicism, judgment, and blame. Charles Eisenstein The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible
  • we are not so different from each other

    If we wish to know about a man, we ask 'what is his story--his real, inmost story?'--for each of us is a biography, a story. Each of us is a singular narrative, which is constructed, continually, unconsciously, by, through, and in us--through our perceptions, our feelings, our thoughts, our actions; and, not least, our discourse, our spoken narrations. Biologically, physiologically, we are not so different from each other; historically, as narratives--we are each of us unique. Oliver Sacks The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales
  • a beautiful world waits for us patiently

    In our future, a beautiful world waits for us patiently. In it, a person in the throes of emotional chaos is met with unconditional support, listened to with patient ears, seen as the sole expert of her own life. She is given sanctuary, and open arms, but only if she wants them. Laura Delano March 31, 2014
  • Oh, no, no, you've got that all wrong. You're not required to respect elders.

    Oh, no, no, you've got that all wrong. You're not required to respect elders. After all, most people are idiots, regardless of age. In tribal cultures, we just make sure that elders remain an active part of the culture, even if they're idiots. Especially if they're idiots. You can't just abandon your old people, even if they have nothing intelligent to say. Even if they're crazy. Sherman Alexie The Toughest Indian in the World
  • the way to be happy is to help others to be so

    Reason, Observation and Experience — the Holy Trinity of Science — have taught us that happiness is the only good; that the time to be happy is now, and the way to be happy is to help others to be so. This is enough for us. In this belief we are content to live and die. If by any possibility the existence of a power superior to, and independent of, Nature shall be demonstrated, we shall trust there will be time enough to kneel. Until then, let us stand erect in this faith. Robert G. Ingersoll On the Gods and Other Essays
  • It is quite normal to fear what one most desires

    It is quite normal to fear what one most desires. We desire to transcend the Story of the World that has come to enslave us, that indeed is killing the planet. We fear what the end of that story will bring: the demise of much that is familiar. Fear it or not, it is happening already. Charles Eisenstein The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible
  • Mindfulness

    There is no need to run, strive, search, or struggle. Just be. Just being in the moment in this place is the deepest practice of meditation. Most people cannot believe that just walking as though you have nowhere to go is enough. They think that striving and competing are normal and necessary. Try practicing aimlessness for just five minutes, and you will see how happy you are during those five minutes. Thich Nhat Hanh The Miracle of Mindfulness

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • 36087572_10213986819699031_7868649531045314560_o.jpg

    The life of Man is a long march through the night, surrounded by invisible foes, tortured by weariness and pain, towards a goal that few can hope to reach, and where none may tarry long. One by one, as they march, our comrades vanish form our sight, seized by the silent orders of omnipotent Death. Very brief is the time in which we can help them, in which their happiness or misery is decided.
  • It feels like the county fair has inhabited my mind

    But my brain winds and wends. Back and forth. Up and down. It feels like the county fair has inhabited my mind-- complete with sketchy rides, carnies, and sugar-amped kids crying over lost balloons. So loud and disorienting. I want it to pack up and move on to the next town. I want my mind to be an open grassy field again with crickets and dandelions. Laura Munson This Is Not The Story You Think It Is: A Season of Unlikely Happiness
  • gaze into the internal mirror

    From time to time, we all must go into a landscape—be it inner or outer landscape—where there are no hiding places. Allowing the stark awe and silence to aid us in both communing and confronting the depth of ourselves. We fear emptiness because we know that within those places of nothingness we will come face-to-face with who we are and gaze into the internal mirror. But what is the alternative? Shall we go our entire life without hearing our own voice . . . without ever having met who we really are when isolated from all else? L.M.
  • 35403568_10213933619489059_3218655655627849728_o.jpg

    I would not have any one adopt my mode of living on any account; for, beside that before he has fairly learned it I may have found out another for myself, I desire that there may be as many different persons in the world as possible; but I would have each one be very careful to find out and pursue his own way, and not his father's or his mother's or his neighbor's instead. Henry David Thoreau Walden
  • Honesty is not the revealing

    Honesty is not the revealing of some foundational truth that gives us power over life or another or even the self, but a robust incarnation into the unknown unfolding vulnerability of existence, where we acknowledge how powerless we feel, how little we actually know, how afraid we are of not knowing and how astonished we are by the generous measure of grief that is conferred upon even the most average life. David Whyte Honesty
  • that completes itself simply by being itself....

    The rich flow of creativity, innovation, and almost musical complexity we are looking for in a fulfilled work life cannot be reached through trying or working harder. The medium for the soul, it seems, must be the message. The river down which we raft is made up of the same substance as the great sea of our destination. It is an ever-moving, firsthand creative engagement with life and with others that completes itself simply by being itself...... David Whyte The Heart Aroused: Poetry and the Preservation of the Soul
  • keep my glass clean

    There might be no unrequited love, because every relationship is a room full of mirrors. What I find and love in others is perhaps merely the reflection of my very best intentions, and what I loathe is the embarrassing illumination of my worst traits and fears. From those who attend almost entirely to their surfaces, I find comfort and familiarity when I too, feel the need to self-obscure. But the people with the clearest and most transparent glass, are always the ones who evoke the most powerful and fascinating emotions in me.
  • You are all just like that

    What I am really saying is that you don’t need to do anything, because if you see yourself in the correct way, you are all as much extraordinary phenomenon of nature as trees, clouds, the patterns in running water, the flickering of fire, the arrangement of the stars, and the form of a galaxy. You are all just like that, and there is nothing wrong with you at all. Alan W. Watts
  • They are wiser than we are

    Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness. Hermann Hesse Bäume: Betrachtungen und Gedichte
  • We may quarrel with men sometimes about things on this earth, but we never quarrel about God

    In a short time a group of commissioners arrived to begin organization of a new Indian agency in the valley. One of them mentioned the advantages of schools for Chief Joseph’s people. Joseph replied that the Nez Percés did not want the white man’s schools. “Why do you not want schools?” the commissioner asked. “They will teach us to have churches,” Joseph answered. “Do you not want churches?” “No, we do not want churches.” “Why do you not want churches?” “They will teach us to quarrel about God,” Joseph said. “We do not want to learn that.

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • mature in one realm, childish in another

    We do not grow absolutely, chronologically. We grow sometimes in one dimension, and not in another; unevenly. We grow partially. We are relative. We are mature in one realm, childish in another. The past, present, and future mingle and pull us backward, forward, or fix us in the present. We are made up of layers, cells, constellations. Anaïs Nin
  • The death of a dream

    The death of a dream can in fact serve as the vehicle that endows it with new form, with reinvigorated substance, a fresh flow of ideas, and splendidly revitalized color. In short, the power of a certain kind of dream is such that death need not indicate finality at all but rather signify a metaphysical and metaphorical leap forward. Aberjhani The River of Winged Dreams
  • The soul doesn't know a thing about deadlines

    Sometimes the people with the greatest potential often take the longest to find their path because their sensitivity is a double edged sword- it lives at the heart of their brilliance, but it also makes them more susceptible to life's pains. Good thing we aren't being penalized for handing in our purpose late. The soul doesn't know a thing about deadlines. Jeff Brown Love It Forward
  • the assurance that dawn comes after night

    Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature -- the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter. Rachel Carson Silent Spring
  • born with a piece of night inside

    You see, some people are born with a piece of night inside, and that hollow place can never be filled - not with all the good food or sunshine in the world. That emptiness cannot be banished, and so some days we wake with the feeling of the wind blowing through, and we must simply endure it... Leigh Bardugo The Language of Thorns: Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic
  • Only the servile are punctual

    The superior thing, in this as in other departments of life, was to be late. Lateness showed that serene contempt for the illusion we call time which is so necessary to ensure the respect of others and oneself. Only the servile are punctual. Rose Macaulay Mystery at Geneva
  • Sometimes our hearts scream yes while our heads say run; and only one can be obeyed

    We deny more than we confess. We hide more than we reveal. We assume because it makes us feel exposed if we have to ask. It's easier to say "I feel nothing" than to admit "I feel something." It takes no courage to say, "I hate you" but it takes a great deal more than moxie to declare its opposite. Masks are elaborate and everyone has a few. It takes a while to get to know people. This doesn't make them special, it makes them like everyone else. Sometimes our hearts scream yes while our heads say run; and only one can be obeyed. Donna Lynn Hope
  • Rum Tum Tugger

    The Rum Tum Tugger is a Curious Cat If you offer him pheasant he would rather have grouse. If you put him in a house he would much prefer a flat, If you put him in a flat then he'd rather have a house. If you set him on a mouse then he only wants a rat, If you set him on a rat then he'd rather chase a mouse. Yes the Rum Tum Tugger is a Curious Cat - And there isn't any call for me to shout it: For he will do As he do do And there's no doing anything about it! T.S. Eliot Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats
  • There is no envy, jealousy, or hatred between the different colors of the rainbow

    There is no envy, jealousy, or hatred between the different colors of the rainbow. And no fear either. Because each one exists to make the others more beautiful. Aberjhani Journey through the Power of the Rainbow
  • So let the darkness shape you

    So let the darkness shape you, let it reform you, let it cradle you and birth you into a new life; a new way of being. Let the spark flame again, in the darkness is where you will find it. L.J. Vanier Ether: Into the Nemesis

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • It was their business to put them into the ground to hide them cleverly

    American planes full of holes and wounded men and corpses took off backwards from an airfield in England. Over France a few German fighter planes flew at them backwards sucked bullets and shell fragments from some of the planes and crewmen. They did the same for wrecked American bombers on the ground and those planes flew up backwards to join the formation. The formation flew backwards over a German city that was in flames.
  • wrapped in a cloud of inevitability

    The most dangerous ideas are not those that challenge the status quo. The most dangerous ideas are the ones so embedded in the status quo, so wrapped in a cloud of inevitability, that we forget they are ideas at all. Jacob M. Appel Phoning Home
  • All the places I've been

    All the places I've been make it hard to begin to enjoy life again on the inside, but I mean to. Take a walk ‘round the block and be glad that I've got me some time to be in from the outside, and inside with you. I'm sitting on the corner feeling glad. Got no money coming in but I can't be sad. That was the best cup of coffee I ever had. And I won't worry about a thing because we've got it made, here on the inside, outside so far away. And we'll laugh and we'll sing get someone to bring, our friends here for tea in the evening
  • Therefore, dear Sir, love your solitude

    Therefore, dear Sir, love your solitude and try to sing out with the pain it causes you. For those who are near you are far away... and this shows that the space around you is beginning to grow vast.... be happy about your growth, in which of course you can't take anyone with you, and be gentle with those who stay behind; be confident and calm in front of them and don't torment them with your doubts and don't frighten them with your faith or joy, which they wouldn't be able to comprehend.
  • Oh I know today is Windsday

    Oh the wind is lashing lustily And the trees are thrashing thrustily And the leaves are rustling gustily So it's rather safe to say That it seems that it may turn out to be It feels that it will undoubtedly It looks like a rather blustery day, today It sounds that it may turn out to be Feels that it will undoubtedly Looks like a rather blustery day Oh I know today is Windsday And this is how I know It is always on a Windsday That the winds begin to blow Alan Alexander Milne
  • The ways by which you may get money

    The ways by which you may get money almost without exception lead downward. To have done anything by which you earned money merely is to have been truly idle or worse. If the laborer gets no more than the wages which his employer pays him, he is cheated, he cheats himself. If you would get money as a writer or lecturer, you must be popular, which is to go down perpendicularly. Those services which the community will most readily pay for, it is most disagreeable to render. You are paid for being something less than a man..... Henry David Thoreau Life Without Principle
  • The trees are bare, but they are already living and breathing

    The snow has not yet left the earth, but spring is already asking to enter your heart. If you have ever recovered from a serious illness, you will be familiar with the blessed state when you are in a delicious state of anticipation, and are liable to smile without any obvious reason. Isn’t that what nature is experiencing just now? The ground is cold, mud and snow squelches under foot, but how cheerful, gentle and inviting everything is!
  • I’m not great at making plans

    I’m not great at making plans into photographic realities. Something always seems to alter the course. Sometimes even the trail itself becomes faint, or comes to an abrupt end, stranding me in NowWhatville. Many have been the times I’ve journeyed long distances to places that seemed promising on paper, only to discover that my timing was off, or the weather got weird, or some small but crucial detail was overlooked, and I’m found face to face with yet another failure. The clearer my intentions were, the bigger the letdown befell. Then somewhere in my thirties, I adopted a new attitude.
  • ....but most of all he liked to listen to stories of real life

    ....but most of all he liked to listen to stories of real life. He smiled gleefully as he listened to such stories, putting in words and asking questions, all aiming at bringing out clearly the moral beauty of the action of which he was told. Attachments, friendships, love, as Pierre understood them, Karataev had none, but he loved and lived on affectionate terms with every creature with whom he was thrown in life, and especially so with mankind- not with anyone in particular, but with whoever that he happened to come across. His life, as he looked at it, had no meaning as a separate entity.
  • Society, as we have constituted it, will have no place for me

    Society, as we have constituted it, will have no place for me, has none to offer; but Nature, whose sweet rains fall on unjust and just alike, will have clefts in the rocks where I may hide, and secret valleys in whose silence I may weep undisturbed. She will hang the night with stars so that I may walk abroad in the darkness without stumbling, and send the wind over my footprints so that none may track me to my hurt: she will cleanse me in great waters, and with bitter herbs make me whole. Oscar Wilde De Profundis

Lately What Preys On My Mind

  • I am a dreamer

    I am a dreamer. I know so little of real life that I just can’t help re-living such moments as these in my dreams, for such moments are something I have very rarely experienced. I am going to dream about you the whole night, the whole week, the whole year. Fyodor Dostoyevsky White Nights
  • strangers in their birthplace

    I have an idea that some men are born out of their due place. Accident has cast them amid certain surroundings, but they have always a nostalgia for a home they know not. They are strangers in their birthplace, and the leafy lanes they have known from childhood or the populous streets in which they have played, remain but a place of passage. They may spend their whole lives aliens among their kindred and remain aloof among the only scenes they have ever known.
  • Maybe do it anyway

    It takes a bit of gumption to wake up every day to the fickle world and yet cleave to your morals and values And not flinch at the slightest inflection of disrespect or disdain from wild ones And not give in and mimic the mockery of blending in void of integrity Standing resplendent among the dull and dirty who are no longer enthralled with the pure light of day Who’ve renounced their identity for worldy pleasures It takes audacity to live individually, intellectually, and compassionately. Maybe do it anyway Emmanuella Raphaelle
  • Prisoner

    I am convinced that imprisonment is a way of pretending to solve the problem of crime. It does nothing for the victims of crime, but perpetuates the idea of retribution, thus maintaining the endless cycle of violence in our culture. It is a cruel and useless substitute for the elimination of those conditions--poverty, unemployment, homelessness, desperation, racism, greed--which are at the root of most punished crime.
  • I was astonished, bewildered...

    I was astonished, bewildered. This was America, a country where, whatever its faults, people could speak, write, assemble, demonstrate without fear. It was in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights. We were a democracy... But I knew it wasn't a dream; there was a painful lump on the side of my head... The state and its police were not neutral referees in a society of contending interests. They were on the side of the rich and powerful. Free speech?
  • Disintegration

    There can be no faith in government if our highest offices are excused from scrutiny - they should be setting the example of transparency, as there can be no leadership without it. Edward Snowden
  • We came to lose our leaves

    We did not come here to remain whole. We came to lose our leaves like the trees, Trees that start again, Drawing up from deeper roots. Robert Bly Eating the Honey of Words
  • pay back

    In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it's wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices. Elizabeth Gilbert Eat, Pray, Love
  • There are different kinds of darkness...

    There are different kinds of darkness,” Rhys said. I kept my eyes shut. “There is the darkness that frightens, the darkness that soothes, the darkness that is restful.” I pictured each. “There is the darkness of lovers, and the darkness of assassins. It becomes what the bearer wishes it to be, needs it to be. It is not wholly bad or good. Sarah J. Maas A Court of Mist and Fury
  • the trademark of the truly alive

    To feel intensely is not a symptom of weakness, it is the trademark of the truly alive and compassionate. It is perhaps not the empath who is broken, but our society that has become dysfunctional and emotionally disabled. There is no shame in expressing our authentic feelings. Those who are at times described as being a 'hot mess' or having 'too many issues' are the very fabric of what keeps the dream alive for a more caring, humane world. We need never be ashamed to let our tears shine a light in this world. Anthon St. Maarten

Connect with joseph

website:

joseph's Curated Collection

This artist has not yet created a curated collection.