30 September 2014

Poem: When Leaves Die

By: Jon Katz
When Leaves Die

When Leaves Die

Why, I wonder,

is it that leaves become more beautiful when they die?

The rest of us living things do not, or is it just me?

Leaves die a defiant death, a spectacular goodbye,

we have never been more radiant, they croon,

so full of life.

is there any living thing that ages so gracefully,

and dies so well?

Well, they whisper,

we are here to say that death is part of life,

one is as beautiful as the other,

the simplest and most common living things on the surface of the earth,

we die better than any other thing.

Or is it just me?, and is death sometimes

the most beautiful and natural thing on Mother Earth.

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Yellow Barn, Route 22

By: Jon Katz
Farmscapes

Farmscapes

I realized this morning I hadn't shot many farmscapes lately, I was in a funky mood today, I got int the car with Red and headed out to find the yellow barn on Route 22, when the afternoon light hits it, it is timeless and iconic.

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Family Together, Woodlands Cemetery, Cambridge, New York

By: Jon Katz
Family Together

Family Together

Sometimes, walking in the cemetery, I am touched by something I see. Here, a family still together, their markers in a row, each one standing in a different way.

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Cemetery Walk With Red. Spirit Dogs And Passages

By: Jon Katz
Cemetery Walk With Red

Cemetery Walk With Red

I have long believed that some dogs are spirit dogs, and that spirit dogs enter our lives for a reason, leave when they are done, they mark the passages of our lives. Orson entered my life to awaken me and bring me to Bedlam Farm to begin my hero journey, he left when his work was done. Rose entered my life to give me the strength to come to this farm and survive there, to learn what I had to learn in a strange and disconnected environment. After Maria came into my life, Rose became ill – the vets never could diagnose her failing disease, other than to say it seemed to be neural.

I believe Rose chose to depart my life when her work was no longer urgent, when I was able to stand on my own two feet, and when my human partner appeared to stand with me. Rose left when she was ready, I believe she is standing with another human being and marking the passage of his or her life.

I am just beginning to see why Red, yet another spirit dog – they appear when we are open to the idea of them – has come into my life. He came to share the experience of leaving Bedlam Farm and making the transition to another way of living. To let go of that life. Since my heart surgery, Red has barely left my side, he sniffs my heart from time to time and watches me closely. He sits with me in cardiac rehabilitation, comes with me on my walks. He lays at my feet when I rest, by my bed when I sleep, by my feet when I write, in the car when I drove to shop or see a doctor or go to the pharmacy. His presence has marked my rebirth.

Red loves the cemetery where I walk, he stays near me, greets the few people we see, waits for me when I stop to take a photo or rest. He has come to mark this passage of my life, as surely as Orson or Rose marked others. When he is done, he will find a way to leave, and I will thank him, and be grateful for him, not mourn him. Dr. Karen Thompson surely told the truth when she said the God she believed in wanted Red to be my dog.

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Small Roses

By: Jon Katz
Small Roses

Small Roses

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