Mornings in the Ghats are an exercise in pastel. Continue reading “Morning in the Ghats”
Our hike in the Himalayas last August was not defined by its birds, surprisingly enough. Rather, it was defined by its flowers.
I tend to avoid flowers, except when as an attraction for butterflies, as a photography subject: stationary plants seem too easy, too facile. But the sheer range we saw in the mountains made me a convert, at least for the duration of the trip. The sheer range! The colors! The fields upon fields of them! (The fact I had no birds to distract me only helped matters.) And I found myself taking my camera out more and more in an endeavor to capture them. Over the next few weeks(? Months? Years? Centuries?) I’m going to be sharing my photographs with you every other Wednesday.
First up: the Cutleaf Buttercup. Not having access to a field guide (or the Internet) for that week, however, made us have to make up our own names. Thus, we named this, instead, the Kashmir Sun-glory. It’s a much better name, I think. 😛
Considering the amount we saw it, we needed a name for it. Meadows were blanketed with them – endless stretches of yellow, forever and ever, brushing the horizon, varnishing the slopes in gold. They brought a humanity to the vistas we confronted every step we took – took it down to the level of a single bee, humming its way from plant to plant; formed the ranges in the microcosm of a single petal drifting to the ground.
and so the light rises,
over bone-still hills;
a river fills vast silences
with the thin whistling
of time and time again,
the susurrating trees
becoming their own
About a month and a half ago, because I suck at updating, we went for a hike in the Himalayas.
It was – amazing, as one might expect. The mountains, the trees, the rivers, the sky, the everything. It’s so quiet there – just the sound of the water and the wind. For miles and miles there is not a single living soul. Just you, and your breathing.
This is an introductory photograph, if anything. I played with it quite a bit in Photoshop – just to see where I could take it.
More stories, poems, and photographs will be forthcoming over the next few months. 🙂
Car-window glimpses –
hints at something beyond
the fingerprinted glass
and constant humming
of movement and silence
in their endless dance,
because you love like this –
You cannot do anything else;
no space forms for anything else
in disappearing tarmac behind
and knowledge of the gap between
possibility and reality.
In the Spanish, or possible French Pyrenees, this house up on a hill, the snow-capped mountains behind, presented an unimaginably picturesque site. It looked as if a postcard had been pasted over the car window.
You get the most peculiar sense of deja-vu sometimes when you’re travelling, especially when driving and there isn’t time to examine the feeling further – perhaps it’s a result of our constant exposure to information, so we see much more, but I’d like to think it’s just a connection to a landscape, to a place – like it’s ok to leave your heart there, half-way across the world.
I think I am in love with the mountains, in all their forms – the breathless immediacy of Himalayan forests, the desolate rocky crags of the Great Rift Valley, the blushing greenery of Japanese hills, and now the snow-capped peaks of the Pyrenees. It is hard to explain what it is about them. The snaking tendrils of snow, or the contrast between the white and the dark, or the green fields, the bite of cold, the footsteps of the animals before you, the picturesque villages, bare trees – it is hard not to love it.
(The unbelievable amounts of raptors, from kestrels to booted eagles, inhabiting their peaks don’t hurt either.)
No… I’m not done with Montserrat yet. This time, I present to you the big picture, quite literally: these are the hills home to the famed church, and if you squint you can see it, about in the center (the jumble of [straighter] lines than the rest). The scenery of Spain is just so absolutely breathtaking and I really wish I could pay justice to it, in words or pixels.
My experience of Sungei Buloh Mangroves as a whole was limited, until a few weeks ago, to a field trip in sixth grade (which, incidentally, was involved with an intra-school photography competition which I never got around to entering because I took too many photographs to process), and a cursory walk with my family.
But being stuck in one place for an hour does help you get to know a place better.
I wanted to try a long exposure shot of the currents in the mangroves, but couldn’t do it as I envioned it as it was too bright, and anyways, I didn’t have my tripod and had to rely on the ledge. The behavior of the birds as the rain intensified was interesting. One Stork-billed Kingfisher kept right on with what it was doing, whereas a flock of Common Redshanks ceased all foraging and huddled together under some foliage (can you spot them? Comment if you can!). Another flock in another place kept right on with their feeding, not bothering the slightest about the rain. The mudskippers skipped. The dragonflies disappeared. And the humans whined from the shelter of the birding hide, complaining about the waste of time while all the while being afforded a unique glance of what happens in the mangroves.