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21. Mejiro Birds and Plum Blossoms: As I walked down my street one spring afternoon in Tokyo, I was stopped in my tracks by the splendor of a plum tree in full bloom. The blossoms were so numerous and large that they obscured the tree's interior spaces. When I leaned in to have a closer look and smell the fragrance, I was suddenly confronted by a tiny green face staring back at me. With a dart it was gone -plunging back inside the realms of the blossoms. As quickly as I could I parted the many blooms and peered in. Two beautiful Mejiro birds were wandering and flitting amongst the colorful boughs. I looked deeply, fixing the sense and details of that wondrous vignette in my mind. Then they were gone.

22. Softshell Turtles and Dragonfly: Each and every late morning in Tokyo, I walked to my local grocery for the day's necessary supplies. I did so along a river path. That river  teemed with life. Fish, birds, turtles, crabs and shrimp thrived along its banks. The clarity of the river allowed for such a remarkable view down amidst the roots and rocks - and there, there drifted creatures and faces waiting in hope that a future meal would but shadow the surface of the water.

23. Badlands Bull: Stepping over a rise while visiting South Dakota, I came face -to-face with an adult bull bison. Its air of confidence and unconcern was remarkable. I could not help but to associate it directly with the landscape about me. It seemed more a geological feature than a member of the animal kingdom -  mountain-like, immovable, ancient and proud.  

24. Clearwater Grouping: Gently rippling the surface, fragile lives are suspended in sunlit backwater pools.

25. Amid the Plumeria: A tiny aviator navigates amongst the coastal blossoms.

26. Teton Pair: Astonishing to see in the wild, the avian symbol of our nation stands not alone but via the close ties of its familial bonds.

27. King Mackerel: Post "King Cod," the mackerel harvest is often heralded as the bounty of the sea. Would that we navigate the waters of responsibility better this time around - so that future fisheries remain both sustainable and healthy. There is a message in the bottle ... one of hope and of warning ...

28. Mayflies and Trout Rise - Okutama River: I sat in my yukata, sipping green tea, looking out over the Okutama River. It was morning and a gentle wind played at the cherry boughs overhanging the water. The sakura (cherry blossom) season was coming to a close and the petals were falling past me onto the flowing surface. I noticed a mayfly alight on the balcony railing – one, then another and another. The trout began to rise among the blossoms.

29. Irises Koto-Ku: My grandmother planted irises. My mother transplanted the irises of my grandmother. When I bought my home I did like-wise - planting and tending three generations of irises of my own. 
As the seasons changed in Tokyo, the narrow strips of cultivated earth along my Koto neighborhood sidewalks burst into bloom. What a joy it was for me to find so many remarkable irises in Japan - well-tended by the local grandmothers whose love of the earth seemed so similar to that of my own heritage.

30. Scenting Winter's Approach - A Grizzly in Autumn: A stillness is upon the evenings, the days have shortened and there is a clinging chill in the night. The forest has crisped and the leaves have begun to fall. With these signals, there is the growing awareness of a scent upon wind - change has come and all the forest must prepare.

31. Prey and Mantis: The ginkgos were verdant - rustling in the morning air along the edge of the rail platform. I arrived early, early enough to look about me and forget the train altogether. Something was moving along the branch next to my shoulder. A mantis was on the hunt amidst the beautiful fanning spring leaves. Woe to the inch worm of that mantis’ intention. The train slid into the platform and nature and time moved forward together.



"Seeking Surfaces -

Then & Now

A Chronology in Low Relief"


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