Beauty in the Details

Coastal Daisy

Pano Harbor from Oceanic PorchLine of ChairsEight miles into the Atlantic from the mainland coast at the border between New Hampshire and  Maine lie the Isles of Shoals, a small cluster of windswept rocky bumps in the ocean which housed some of the earliest long-term European settlements in North America. Ample cod fishing fueled the economy, a legacy you’ll see reflected in the weathervane on top of the old stone church which now serves as non- or multi-denominational chapel for the many conference-goers who enjoy week-long conferences and other retreats at Star Island, which has served as a base for Unitarian-Universalist retreats and conferences for more than 100 years. I’ve just been out there for a week of meditation, my third such outing since 2009. I’ve deeply relished and valued all of these meditation weeks, the intensity with which they permit to settle into the moment and clear my mind and emotions of plans, of worries, of day-to-day “reality” and just be for a bit. In essence, meditation – especially when I’m on Star to do it – takes me to a mental and spiritual  place which evades intellectual and verbal description. That said, this time more than my two past such retreats, I was intensely drawn all week to attempting to photograph & record the magnificence of that which is small, the perfect beauty and reality of this physical world, its tides and seasons and flowers. And though I’m working with a very basic pocket-sized field-appropriate camera, I think my results were reasonable. Hopefully you’ll find at least some of these images as lovely as I do and maybe they’ll take you into a quieter place for at least a breath or three. Peace, enjoy.

Flagpole - Dock - Harbor - IslandsColumbineDucklings & MotherColumbine & Rock Wall LichenDriftwood & Rose PetalsFading Iris Iris & Stone WallFeather in the GrassIris Closeup 1 Iris Closeup 2 Iris Closeup 3 Lighthouse 2Kelpy Rocks & Cedar Island Ladybug on Leaf Lichen - Rock - Moss Lichen & Shadows Lichen at Sunset Lighthouse & CoastlineLighthouse 6Massed Blossoms & Harbor 2 Memento Mori 2At first I thought crab, now I think maybe mouse. I get comfortable with impermanence through meditation…a good thing, in my current life plan/lifestyle…Oceanic Sunrise 3 Selfie 1Oceanic Sunrise Pano Church - Stone Village - Monument

Pano Rocks & Islands Sunrise Purple-Yellow IrisPeony in Bud

Peony 8Selfie at SunriseStar Island's Buildings at SunsetWhite Rose 2 White Rose
Tiny Yellow 2Yellow IrisBee & Purple BloomsChimney & Monument Spire Chive Blossoms & Stone Wall Church 1 Blue Irises & Stone HouseBlue Iris - Stone House - Coastal HorizonChurch 3 Working Dock 1Shelll & Seaweed at LowtideShell - Snail LowtideWaving GoodbyeCoastal DaisiesSummer House & Sunset Clouds

6 responses

  1. Jeff Gordon

    Superb New England images. Your flowers should help prepare you for the New Mexico wedding ala Georgia O’Keeffe. Best.

    June 30, 2014 at 14:17

  2. Diane Rachiele

    Lovely. 😉

    June 30, 2014 at 14:34

  3. Bill McCuskey

    Beautiful, Paul. Love Maine coast! Thanks for sharing the image wealth.

    June 30, 2014 at 16:25

  4. Stephen Brockmann

    Nice flowers and layout, Paul. I like the touch with the round pictures!

    July 1, 2014 at 03:09

  5. Maria

    For the last few days, I’ve been staying with my friend Sarah, whom I met on Star a couple of years ago at a Quaker retreat. She’s out now, but when she gets back, we’ll glory in these wonderful photos as we sit on her porch surrounded by the bay breezes of East Sandwich, another lovely coastal venue.

    July 2, 2014 at 11:13

  6. profknapp

    Your pictures are absolutely gorgeous, and remind me of how much I enjoyed the few days that Anne and I spent on Star Island as “personal retretants” a few years ago. What a wonderful place to meditate. Sounds like you are having a good vacation. Blessings on you, my friend, as you enjoy and re-create!

    July 19, 2014 at 14:34

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