Last night I dreamt of ravens; ravens hiding amongst a murder of crows. Try as they might to unassumingly blend with the other corvids, I saw them as clear as day. True greatness cannot remain hidden. Like water against rock, it fights it’s way free.
Raven, did you come to warn me of misfortune or perhaps betrayal? Was your prophecy that of wisdom? I want to take heed but as in so many matters, I simply do not understand. In the off chance you are taking requests, a message from the god of truth and healing would be nice. Living with the knowledge that I know so little is a new paper cut each day.
You’ve come to me many times in the last year, Raven. More times than in the sum of my whole life. You have been calling out on well-worn paths. But, until recently, I never saw you, never heard your voice. Were you always there while I was busy sleepwalking?
One autumn afternoon, I heard you before I could see you. You were invisible, or my eyes were blind. I know not which. There was only your call carried on the wind. Though we’d not met, I knew your voice, I knew it was you on the far side of my sight. The omniscient voice told me that there was something more beyond my reach. But, the first step was to believe.
Do you remember when you called to me from the leafless tree over the river? It was just you and me. I stood listening as the sun reflected on your blue-black wings; you told me a secret. The knowledge was only for me. When the strangers came to see you, you said nothing more and I knew it was time for me to go. Were you there to guide my soul towards a new life?
That morning in the rain, you perched exposed, silently watching the fog. There were many places nearby in which to seek shelter, to shield yourself from the harshness of the elements. But you sought them not. Head down, you did not turn away from discomfort. You met it head on, diminishing its power over you. My wish for you was a laurel wreath.
A few weeks ago, Kenny and I stopped by Louis’ Lunch, “the birthplace of the hamburger sandwich” in New Haven, Connecticut. A joint that’s been slingin’ the same patties since 1895 must be doing something right, right? I figured it was worth a look-see.
While the burger wasn’t my thing, I loved the potatoe salad. And the ambiance can’t be beaten if you’re interested in nostalgic eateries. Watching their throwback toaster and their burger broilers in action is a unique experience.
The restaurant is small and I’ve read the line can be out the door and the wait for food, quite long. Kenny and I lucked out, walking right up to the counter to order. But while we waited for our noms, the place filled wall-to-wall in a blink.
Know before you go: Cash only and you get the burger their way. It’s served on white toast, medium-rare, with the choice of the following toppings: cheese, onion, and tomato. Don’t even think about asking for ketchup or fries, you will be killed.
On my last jaunt around Connecticut on the 690, I had my GoPro clicking away, snapping photos of the places that I passed though. It was a gorgeous day – blue skies, not too hot, especially on those shady backroads.
Though I probably would’ve benefitted from moving the camera mount around for a different point of view – I’m still happy with sharing the way I saw things.
Sometimes I’m a little light on the words but that’s alright. I’m just going to let the pictures do most of the talking.
So New Englandy. Red barn, green grass rolling away to forever, fieldstone wall following suit.
I followed the rainbow to its end and what did I find? A pot of gold? Aww, Hell NO – Hell 2 Da Naw Naw! I found a KTM. Insert swirly heart-shaped eyes emoji here.
Actually, I saw this mural when I was on my way to visit Calder’s Stegosaurus in Hartford. It kicked off a train of thought that’s nagged me many times over the last year or so. As a result of riding around and just looking at stuff, you draw many conclusions about people and the life that is lived in the places you pass through. Some of the conclusions you arrive at are right, some undoubtedly wrong, and for some maybe the truth is irrelevant.
Anyway, the rainbow mural made me think about how it seems like there is an economic divide that changes the way that neighborhoods or individual homes display art.
In lower-income areas, there’s a more ready acceptance of decorative expression on the exteriors of houses, on porches, in yards and on the sides of buildings. I’m not talking about just haphazard and shitty tagging – I mean people creating something they’re proud of displaying. It could be anything from painted birdhouses, signage, yard art or something that might end up listed on Roadside America. Even if you deem it to be lowbrow, right down to people decorating their houses for holidays.
As you start climbing up the economic ladder, neighborhoods become much more sanitized, more homogenized and manicured to the nth degree. Instead of displaying artwork outside, it moves indoors, moves in to frames or under spotlights and pieces becomes “important.” Occasionally, you’ll see a sculptural piece or a fountain outside but it seems that they’re kind of the exception. When is the last time you saw a blizzard of paper snowflakes or construction paper Valentine hearts taped to the windows of a McMansion?
As we move up the ladder do we lose our ability to love, display and enjoy making beautiful things just because?
Did I ever mention that I have a teensy-weensy problem with obsession? You’re shocked, I bet. Well, after peering over the rock wall of Alexander Calder’s former home in Connecticut, I browsed the web to try to find places that his work was on public display.
That’s how I found myself riding in to downtown Hartford, Connecticut on a February day. I was hunting dinosaurs. Stegosaurus, to be exact. Stegosauruses? Stegosauri? Whatever. This thing:
Alexander Calder’s Stegosaurus
While I was walking the dog today, looking up at the sky – it made me smile to think that I’m still soft enough to see whales in the clouds, the Wolfman’s face in a tree burl or to enjoy the whimsy of a big red Stegosaurus.