Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Admirable Women - a poem, 152/365


Margaret Bednar's archival family photograph - early 1900's
Admirable Women


Post victorian women, 
sidesaddle adventurers,
educated and free.
Dared to partake, a bit,
in a man's world.
Exceptional individuals
who forged paths
 mostly forgotten now
except in sepia images,
looking old fashioned and quaint.
But look closely and you will see
energy, determination and spirit.
Three qualities still valued today.

by Margaret Bednar,
03/01/2011, Art Happens

For "In the Moment" Challenge
Please click to find out more about this monthly photography, art, poetry and writing challenge!

I also submitted it to One Stop Poetry's "One Shot Wednesday" Poetry forum - literally over one hundred poets tend to enter their work - it is quiet an array of talent!  I think this also fits in with "Poetry Potluck's" theme of "Idols, Role Models and Mentors"

The above is also my quick reflection loosely based on the theme "camping" for the "March Challenge".    The host noted that Yellowstone National Park was established on this day in 1872 and it sent me hunting for a shoebox of old photos.  My grandmother traveled from Northern Illinois with a group of friends when she was a young lady to I thought Yellowstone National Park.   I need to question my mother about this as I have numerous photos and post cards from early 1900 similar to the one above.  I plan on doing a future post about this.  My grandmother is front and center on the mule.

The photo is a picture taken in the "Garden of the Gods" in Colorado Springs, Co.  Click HERE to see google images of this amazing place.  I'm thinking this might be a formation known as "balanced rock".  The proportions are a bit off from what I can find on the website, but it has been over 100 years and maybe the elements have been at work.

In my very brief research, I found out that the song "America the Beautiful" was inspired by the beauty Katherine Lee Bates saw in 1893 while she journeyed in private wagon to the summit of Pikes Peak.   Katherine Lee Bates was a long-time professor at Wellesley College in Massachusetts, and lectured at the summer session at Colorado College.

* * * * *

My 1st and 3rd photos below are for today and tomorrow's "Movement in March".  The second is for "The Creative Exchange".  I remember sitting and enjoying the sun as my girls kayaked in the little pond.  They had just spent a day horseback riding at Boyne Highlands Resort - 20 minutes from where we used to live in Northern Michigan. 




I have been unable to carve out time to visit all my blog friends sites and it is killing me.  I hope to swing by and see what creative energies are flourishing out there this evening.

40 comments:

Carol Blackburn said...

Wonderful photo and tribute to your ancestors.

cloakedmonk.com said...

What a fabulous heritage! And such a great way to honor them in image and word.

Shalom.

Rosie said...

What a wonderful post! I love your poem and the picture to it! And what a gorgeous start on the March theme!

lisa said...

I love this poem Margaret! So beautifully written, and as always your photographs are wonderful. That is a really sweet shot of the girls!

Thank you so much for sharing this today at The Creative Exchange.

I wish you a wonderful day!

lisa.

Mike Patrick said...

As a guy, I marvel at your grandmother riding sidesaddle, especially in that rough country. I used to ride a lot, but I couldn't ride fifty feet on a sidesaddle. Admirable Women is an apt title to the photo. It would also make a great poetry prompt anytime.

honeyhaiku said...

Lovely words to match a lovely picture.

Kristy said...

Beautiful gardens!

cianphelan said...

Thanks for bringing this to the One Shot! A marvelous little throwback to those ancestors that worked so hard to bring the world to where it is today. Without such women, without so many people of all walks, in fact, where might the world be today? A humbling thought...

And that, in a case like this, they look like they could have so much fun doing it...delightful to see.

Vicki Lane said...

Amazing! Women always seem to accomplish so much, in spite of constraints like corsets, side saddles, long skirts, high heels,babies . . . amazing!

Brian Miller said...

no they dont and they are an inspiration...i like this...

Pat said...

Wonderful words and lovely pictures!

Ruth said...

I love those women at the Garden of the Gods, where I climbed long ago! What a treasure that photo is. And your poem-remembrance of them, precious.

The resort photos are gorgeous, especially that Venus. Wow.

beccagivens said...

You continue to amaze me with your photos and words in any form. What a charming archival photo of your grandmother ... can ONLY imagine their adventure, especially at the time. Your prose managed it well. Thank you for sharing. ~becca~

Lui said...

This is special, Margaret!
I hope you shared what your grandma did in her lifetime. Their remarkable stories are perfect inspiration to the youth of today!

Steve Isaak said...

Solid work, good flow.

Kavita said...

Now that's a tribute well deserved, Margaret!!
I really LOVE how your words SPEAK for the pictures... you seem to do it with so much ease...

Cheers to enthusiasm...and to those zealots out there!! :)
Sepia, monochrome or Eastman.. the color and LIFE they hold is worth admiring!!

Well written, my friend..

rmpWritings said...

"energy, determination and spirit" is definitely visible. they are still valued and needed today. lovely poem.

Margaret said...

Thank you everyone! I have so many photos of my grandmother and I really need to write down what my mom tells me. Unfortunately I never sat down and asked my grandmother about what it was like in the early 1900's. I guess I was too young... Your feedback means the world to me.

Shashi said...

Dear Margaret

I have always enjoyed your journey kind of verses interspersed with your images and thoughts about the same... your verse is beautiful and I enjoyed your pronouncement...
'energy, determination and spirit.
Three qualities still valued today.'
And I agree with you completely..

ॐ नमः शिवाय
Om Namah Shivaya
http://shadowdancingwithmind.blogspot.com/2011/03/whispers-winter-dew.html
Twitter @VerseEveryDay

kolembo said...

I enjoyed this a lot!

...sidesaddle adventurers...

Whip-lash-away-why-doncha! Whootish!

Great stuff.

jessicasjapes said...

Lovely poem to those brave women who helped get us where we are today. I love looking at those old photos and wondering what kind of live they each had.
Here from Poetry Potluck.
http://jessicasjapes.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/sweet-pleasure/

Jingle said...

elegant imagery and poetry...art..

welcome and enjoy..

A++

Margaret said...

Shashi - thank you and your words go right to my heart. I started poetry only last October, I think. Each time I approach a challenge or idea and I think "I can't do this". Your encouragement and saying you enjoy my poems really helps me to keep learning, keep trying.

Kolembo - :) That is my favorite line "side saddle adventurers. Thank you for your enthusiasm! :)

Jessicasjapes - I so agree - the faces peering back from old photos are so intriguing. I will visit your blog and look forward to seeing your work soon... I'm hoping to find time this evening to check out all the blogs I follow and I look forward to reading your poem!

Margaret said...

Jingle - thank you for the invitation and the compliment! :)

Buddha3074 said...

Excellent photo and reminder of the power/determination of women.

fiveloaf said...

i enjoyed this and i must say you have a knack to make your blog very interesting! thank you for sharing this! my late potluck haha- http://fiveloaf.wordpress.com/2011/03/08/nectar-from-heaven/

Margaret said...

Buddha2074 - Where would our men be without our prompting and nagging... because you know, much we can do ourselves (we just don't want men to always know it... :) LOL Thank you for the comment!

Fiveloaf - That was an AWESOME compliment. Great way to start my day. And a late potluck is better than no potluck. ;)

haikulovesongs said...

if not for them, we wouldn't have the freedoms we often take for granted. well said.

Margaret said...

haikulovesongs - We do take them for granted and you are so correct!

Betsy said...

Oh, that photo is so cool! It reminds me a lot of some of the photos of my great grandparents in New Mexico right about that same time.

Postcardy said...

I love the first photo of the women. I wonder if there was a photographer there photographing all the tourists in the same setting.

Tattered and Lost said...

I can't help but think the first shot should be called "Picnic at Hanging Rock."

Howard said...

The first photograph is brilliant

Christine H. said...

Great photo. Those intrepid ladies! Can you imagine doing all that outdoor stuff and trying to keep those voluminous skirts clean and in one piece? I have never tried to ride sidesaddle, but it seems like it would be terribly difficult, much more so than riding the normal way. Thanks for posting this.

MuseSwings said...

What a wonderful photo - and poem about those edgy ladies! They have loosed the surly bonds - if not the corsets of the day!

Margaret said...

Betsy, I hope to see some of those photos!

Postcardy - I wonder. I have a boxful of little photographs that I will be sharing -makes me think she had her own camera. But this one was larger so maybe it was a photographer.

Tattered & Howard - Yes, it is a photograph with a lot of fun to it!

Christine - Imagine how hot it was. I can't imagine, but I guess they were used to all those contraptions!

Alan Burnett said...

The Colorado Springs photograph is stunning and the poem just seems to match it so well. Words and image perfectly blended. Thanks for contributing it to Sepia Saturday

Marilyn said...

The first photo is wonderful, they must have been adventurous women for the times, although when I come to think of it some of my own and my husband's female ancestors came to NZ on their own! I loved your poem about them. I found you via Sepia Saturday.

Nancy said...

You imagine very well how adventuresome and free your grandmother and her friends must have felt! What a great photograph!

Margaret said...

I just love the Sepia Saturdays. Thanks for all your comments and I look forward to next Saturday.