Monday, January 31, 2011

Magnolia Leaf, 121 & 122/365

 The photo above is for Macro Monday#123.  The one below is for "Patterns & Repetition in February".  One of my favorite trees here in the south is the Magnolia tree.  I do look forward to the fabulous white flower, but for now I do think the colors of the leaves are splendid.  I love the repeating pattern in each leaf and the leaves themselves.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Partially Seen - Last 3 Photos for January, 120/365

Isn't the above every kids desire when they walk by it?  But I remember when the gum balls were much cheaper than 25 cents!  All of these photos are for "Partially Seen in January".  I got to see my "partially seen" oldest son this weekend!  He came home from school and it was very nice to have the whole family together!   I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  I guess it is actually the end of Partially Seen and now the the new topic is "Patterns and Repetition".  Should be interesting...

Is this what the guy below dreams about?  The lion was taken at the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro, NC.  A FABULOUS zoo!  I have entered the photo below in this  week's "Creative Exchange".   I have taken many photos of my sweet kitty - but it always makes me happy to see him snoozing away.  Isn't he a cutie?

Friday, January 28, 2011

Haiku - "Unexpected Beauty", 117/-119/365

Such unexpected beauty!
Winter's wallflower

The more I walk up and down this trail, the more I am enjoying the simple beauty that is before me.  Today it was 50 degrees and there was a very earthy smell.  These are from three different days and the top two were taken during sunset and the one below is 9:30 am.   I know the winds are blowing and the snow is piling up in the northern states but these are much more typical of what winter days should be for central North Carolina.  The top photo is for "Weekend Reflections".

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Haiku - Summertime

Flying like seagulls
Seizing and taunting the wind
Summertime delight

This is Little Traverse Bay - Lake Michigan.  I took this photo two years ago while relaxing at Zorn Park on the little sandy beach in Harbor Springs, Michigan.  I wanted to photograph the many sailboats and this yacht nosed into the photo.  I kind of like it!  And it is perfect for "Partially Seen in January" (although this was taken in August) but I'm bending the rules a bit.

Do the following photos make you long for summer?

This photo above for "Sunday Creative" word for the week is "extent".  I always loved the horizon line of Lake Michigan - the extent of it is like the ocean and the sweep of the landscape and water is vast!

My "Flash Friday 55" on my creative writing blog "Art Happens in Black & White" can be seen by clicking HERE.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Magpie Tale #50, "The Seasons of Love", 116/365

Photo courtesy of Tess Kincaid for Magpie Tales

The Seasons of Love

Predictable, love is not.
What's around the bend, unsure.
If love were a season to select
Which one would you choose?

Passionate Winter?
Quite a swaggering affair.
A tempest one minute,
Beautifully serene the next.

Invigorating Spring?
Full of hope and wonder.
Everything exciting and new,
Instilling life and energy.

Languid Summer?
Warmth seeping into the soul.
Agreeable and content,
Wrapped in comfortable silence.

Sensitive Fall?
Bursting at the seams, ready to
Explore and live life to its fullest.
Not wasting a minute, full speed ahead.

For most of us, love is a journey,
A back and forth of the four.
Truly blessed if we experience the 
Beauty and challenge of each.

by Margaret Bednar

The above is for "Magpie Tales".  The top winter scene is the photo prompt.  Please click HERE to be transported to either join or read other submissions. I also submitted it to One Stop Poetry's - "One Shot Wednesday".

And speaking of love, who wouldn't want the faithful AND forgiving love of a dog...  This is for "Partially Seen in January" and "Black & White Wednesdays."

...and the following photo is for "The Creative Exchange".  I have always loved this silhouette and love the fact that Canadian geese mate for life (it kind of fits in with the theme of the poem).  One of our favorite family movies is "Fly Away Home" (1996). It stars Jeff Daniels and is about a father, daughter and a flock of Canadian Geese.  

Monday, January 24, 2011

"Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.", a poem, 115/365

The photo above is for "Partially Seen in January" and also my 115 photo of my march towards a photo a day for a whole year!

The poem below is an exercise for - Monday's One Stop Poetry Form   The form they are still highlighting is the villanelle - which I find extremely difficult.  It has a very specific repetitive rhyming pattern with certain lines repeating themselves and a certain word count per line.  The following poem is inspired by certain quotes from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  that I found on a blog I follow, but for the life of me I can't remember whose blog it was.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther planted a freedom tree
He envisioned it laden with ripe fruit
To help us reach a peaceful destiny

Branches of hope, courage, and dignity
Prayerful a perfect harvest could take root
Martin Luther planted a freedom tree

To gather as "A single garment", key
Life as interrelated; our pursuit
To help us reach a peaceful destiny

Hard work and sacrifice a certainty
Believing the dream; a difficult route
Martin Luter planted a freedom tree

"Determined courage", a must we agree
"Urgency" with one voice we must recruit
To help us reach a peaceful destiny

A better world Dr. King did foresee
Watering and nurturing, our salute
Martin Luther planted a freedom tree
To help us reach a peaceful destiny

Margaret Bednar

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"The Embrace" and "A Path, Destructive" two poems

Photo courtesy of Heather T.
 The Embrace

And clinging

Feathery caress
So intimate

Deadly kiss

by Margaret Bednar

The poem above is for "Write with Pictures" - Wednesday's Ten (share thoughts in ten words only). The photograph is provided by Helen of "A Vermont Girl - Memoirs and Photography"

The following is for One Stop Poetry's "One Shoot Photography Sunday".  The photo is courtesy of Mike Roemer.  Please click on his link or on the one above to enjoy his interview by Dustus.  

Photo courtesy of Mike Roamer
A Path, Destructive

Desire courses through our veins,
Often attracted to passions unfitting.
The gifts bestowed upon us, misused,
Traveling down a path, destructive.

Like a moth to a flame we are lured,
Tempted by the promise of greatness.
Wasting the potential hidden within,
Happiness voluntarily castaway.

by Margaret Bednar 

Blue Heron, 114/365

I can't even believe my son spotted this bird.  We were far away from this blue heron (is that what it is? Or a crane?) and as we were crossing a long foot bridge, he said bird!  We looked (and I squinted) and there he was.  The photo above is for "Partially Seen in January".  Now the video below, my son seems a bit confused as to the sounds it makes.  Or maybe my daughters were trying to distract him while I took some photos.  (We'll go with the second explanation).  Below is a 10 second video. (and all that energy you hear from my son is at the END of our walk... oh, if adults only had the energy of children!)

If he didn't have the red sweater on, he would be hidden just like the blue heron!  The photo below is very grainy - no tripod (once again) and far, far away.

Friday, January 21, 2011

A Proud Mamma!, 113/365

My son's poetry is one of two featured over at One Stop Poetry's blog - Friday Poetically!  Two teenage boys were selected and I think you will have fun swinging over and checking it out.  My son has a blog, but due to time constraints (could he be studying?  Oh the life of a teenager :) he posts sporadically.

I also invite you to participate in Write with Pictures.   My photography was selected for the Friday challenge:  Fridays Poetry Muse - use any poetry style - share from your heart as the photo inspires you.  Click HERE to be transported to my photo and participate.  My poem is at the bottom of this post.

For "Partially Seen in January", I have selected a photo of the same horse - cropped a little and a bit "noisey".  I think I will stroll over there today with my camera in hand and get some more frames of this handsome devil.  My husband thinks the horse is "strange" looking, but I think he is grand.  How about you?


Passionately prancing
To your own rhythm.
Structure unacceptable,
Rules cast aside.
Intensity shines forth
From a poetic soul.
Feet drumming
A mystical beat.

by Margaret Bednar

Thursday, January 20, 2011

An Award from Ruth of Synch-ro-ni-zing!, 112/365

Photo courtesy of Ryan of ArborView
Skeletons cavort
Wind frisks, crystal fingers cling
Mid-winter's frolic

The above is a poetry challenge for "Write with Pictures" - a blog that highlights different writing challenges for specific days of the week.  Todays challenge is Thursday's Haiku.  The photographer is Ryan of ArborView.  His blog is mostly devoted to trees, but I saw many beautiful nature photos as well. 

The photo below is for "Partially Seen in January".  I thought it would be a fun contrast photo for the one above.  I took this photo this past summer at a Renaissance Festival.

And really, really fun news.  I saved the best for last.  I won a prize from a wonderful blog friend Ruth of "Synch-ro-ni-zing".  Every day I check to see what is going on over there.  The comments are always fun and often turn in to a conversation amongst her followers, a back & forth.  Ruth is a talented woman, gifted with a warmth and charm that jumps out from the cold computer screen.  Her poetry grabs your soul and her photography is stunning.  And now I find ... she can paint!  

In celebration of "Synchronizing's" 5th blog year, my name was drawn at random.  And I win a painting (6" seasoned oak) of a bluebird.  Bluebirds are special to her - and do you know what.  As I was returning from my walk with my son, a bluebird flew right in front of me and perched on a street sign.  I thought of Ruth immediately - and I have NEVER noticed these birds around here before.  This little guy was doing a bit of a dance - as if to say - "If you are going to take a photo, you must get my best side.  I guess he likes all his sides!  The photos are grainy as I was far away, no tripod and I didn't want to run the risk of scaring him.  Come to find out, Ruth drew my name right around lunchtime the very same day!  Now, if that isn't synchronicity - I don't know what is.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Magpie Tale #49, "The Grand Ol' Hat", 111/365

 My Great Aunt, Jennie Beckington, 1905

My Grandmother, Marguerite Hutchins Beckington, born 1892 
I apologize if you have already read this poem.  I am submitting it to One Shot Wednesday #30 of One Stop Poetry.  Please check out the other submissions!

Edwardian Days
When swirling skirts gracefully 
Swept the floor, ankles carefully hidden.
Puffed up like a proud pigeon and resembled
   An instrument measuring time.
Oh, how to show
Individuality? Dare
We suggest such a
Thing?  A prim and
Proper young
Must wear her hat squarely
Upon her head; no silly feather, please!
But, if one had a desire for a bit of frivolity, well a trip
To the Hat Maker might just do the trick.  A feather added and tilted
To one        side, a splendid ornate hat to promenade.  A       multitude 
Of other       frivolous items could grace the crown:  A poppy,      a plume,
How         about a large cabbage rose?  A bit overwhelming?          Well,
 That was         the very idea!  To have fun, live a little, after all,             it was
 Just                           a hat.  The only thing exposed                          was 
Hair!                        Sometimes splurged, and added a                     bird?
Well,                                 Not a whole bird,                                   nor 
Even                                             a                                           whole
Wing.                                       For                                      many
Years,                             Twenty                           in fact, 
The               Audabon Society            fought
To outlaw such animal cruelty!  
Even hat pins were subject to the law!
Why, they could only extend so far - dangerous
Weapons they.  Known for poking, scraping and stabbing!
Regulations on how far they could protrude without hat-pin
Protectors. Some were banned from public transportation, in fact.
So, no whole birds, but how about bunches of cherries, blackberries
Or ribbon rosettes?  Hats made to whirl, flow and dip; some swathed in
Tulle.  Some glorious hats mysteriously rested upon the hair, thanks to 
The secret of “wadded” hair saved from thy very own brush to make the 
Grand pompadour!   Possibly a bit of mystery might be desired; was that
Even allowed?   It could be arranged with a bit of cobweb trim hanging
Over the face.  Social gatherings were not complete without one’s hat,
In fact it was part of proper etiquette.   Quite disgraceful to be seen
Without!  Even the little widow could not step out... all in black, of
Course.  No feather for that would be too gay but the veil was ok.
Oh yes,  the good  Ol’ Edwardian Days!  Most likely styles to never 
Be seen again. Glimpsed by some of us still alive as we watched
Our grandmothers step out.   Those wonderfully grand ladies who knew 
How to dress in style, held on to their "vogue" until the very end. White 
Gloves, snap purse dangling at the elbow, and perhaps, the hats a
Bit smaller, but there non-the-less.  Ornate glasses framed many of 
Their smiling faces, pearls circling their necks.  Still buttoned up with 
Proper skirt line maintained; although a few inches shorter.  How “modern”
They must have felt.  So here’s a nod to the grand ladies of old, who wore
Those hats with such style and grace.  How were they able to carry off
Such hats as these? Looking at the photos, their eyes might offer a clue.   
The                    Women's
Suffra                     gette's
Atti                        tude?
 In Courage                 And Honor.          

This "shape" poem is for Magpie Tales #49.  (I made a few changes after my first post - had to go in and correct the mixed up tenses) The original photo prompt is at the bottom of this post.  I have also submitted this to One Stop Poetry's "One Shot Wednesday".  I remember going through the hat boxes in my grandmother's attic.  They were piled atop one another and these "ancient" hats were packed amongst newspaper.  By the time I was born, I don't think she wore them anymore - and I had a hard time imagining her in them.  How I wish I had those hats today.  At least I have a few photos.

In the photo above, I love that all the ladies have their "automobile" hats on.  My grandmother is sitting in the first row, third from left. (or first one sitting on the right)

In this photo, my grandmother is with her friends.  She is the one in the center with her purse in the crook of her arm and ... one of two with a head piece on.  It was taken in the year of 1961. 

Below is the grand photo that was the inspiration for this Magpie Tale, taken by Tess Kincaid of Willow Manor:

"Photo taken by Tess Kincaid"

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

"A Stroll Along the Path" 108, 109 & 110/365

Went for a walk with my 3 year old son.

We didn't get much exercise, but we did stop and explore.  A lot.
At every little puddle...

Which suits me just fine - I saw plenty of photo opps.  I got 5 of the 7 weekly photo
challenges I like to participate in done during this one walk!

I had no tripod with me and my camera has limited abilities.  There is "noise" here for
 sure, but I love the reflection in the water drop.  This will be for the next
"Macro Monday" as I missed it this week.

I told my son to stay on the path so I could get a closer shot at the water's edge.  The
photo above is for "The Sunday Creative"- challenge word is "extension".
I love how these roots reach out and stretch along the shore.

Hmm.  I should have known.

It surprises me how quietly beautiful winter can be.  This photo will be for "Weekend Reflections".

He must have pitched stones into the water for 30 minutes. The above photo
will be for "Black & White Wednesdays".

Peek-a-boo!  The above photo is for "Partially Seen in January". 

He promised me he wouldn't fall in.  "Ah pomise, mummy"

...he didn't "pomise" to not walk in, though.  

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Strangle Hold, Haiku

Warm sun, soft blanket
Curled up, dreaming for hours 
The life of a cat

Haven't we all wished to be a cat at one time or another?  And don't you just love the warm tummy smell of a kitty that is still groggy from sleep?  I have seen all of my girls (and 18 year old son if the truth be told) jostle to be the first to snuggle with the "victim"... for that IS the way the cat feels.  I'm not sure they are "feelin' the love" when they are so rudely awakened.

This photo is for two challenges.  One is for "The Creative Exchange"  and for "Partially Seen in January".  

Hand in Hand, a Poem, 107/365

Painting by Helen Eaton of Word Weaver Art

The above is a painting by Helen of Word Weaver Art.   Please visit her blog and etsy shop.  This was submitted to the monthly challenge "In the Moment".  The January challenge word is "unsullied" and even though I wasn't able to work the word into my poem I was able to use this photo for another challenge.

I used the inspiration for One Stop Poetry's - Monday 17th challenge.  A Villanelle poem - or sort of.  It has a certain count and beat and rhyming scheme.  - which I don't think I was exactly successful with...  To see some good examples, you should check out One Stops blog (click above in blue).

I found it very difficult not to make this sound like a bad greeting card...  I want critiques - I would love to work on more of these.  Obviously, two great lines (and easy rhyming words!) are helpful to begin with.

Hand in Hand

Fingers clasped, palms together
Made of the same sweet design
We can face all kinds of weather

Special gift to one another
You are dear, sister of mine
Fingers clasped, palms together

Some call you "little mother"
My eyes simply see "divine"
We can face all kinds of weather

You encourage constant blather
And offer a safe lead line
Fingers clasped, palms together

I can be quite a bother
From your lips never a whine
We can face all kinds of weather

Protector like no other
Our hearts will always intertwine
Fingers clasped, palms together
We can face all kinds of weather

by Margaret Bednar

Sisters - I like to think that they have each other to turn to for their whole lives.  The above poem was written from a younger sister's point of view.  A big sister is a recipient of a bit of "hero" worship for a while, I think.  But then, as they grow older, the playing field evens out and they are truly a source of comfort and guidance for each other.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

"Chewin' Cud"

Fresh organic milk
Sun bathin' and chewin' cud
Lucky dairy cows 

Lucky for a while at least - as long as their milk production stays high.  I loved this shot because not one cow is seen in it's entirety.  So, perfect for "Partially Seen in January".

One Shoot Sunday, "The First Kiss"

photo courtesy of Katherine Forbes

The First Kiss
We trembled with anticipation
As we walked along the dock.
Shyly glanced at one another,
Awkwardness multiplied.
Faced each other -
Lips puckered, 
As if experiencing
A sour lemon.
A mountain range apart.
It finally landed
Like a butterfly
On the corner of my mouth
And swiftly fluttered
After fifty years,
We have improved.


by Margaret Bednar

I also posted this on my new Creative Writing blog: Art Happens in Black & White. It is also on my sidebar.  Since this reads kind of like a poem, I thought I would post it here as well.  Please visit my "Black & White" blog and see what you think.  :)  

The above is a Flash Fiction 55 for One Stop Poetry's "One Shoot Sunday".  The photographer interviewed is Katherine Forbes.  Please click on One Shoot Sunday if you would like to read other submissions for this photo prompt.