Another Gift From Mom

John Clark shifting gears in the midst of a planned post. I had today’s blog mostly written when a random thought made me go in another direction. Our book discussion group is reading Henry Beston’s The Outermost House this month. It was my pick because Mom was a big fan of his writing and I knew by picking it, I’d have to read it. It didn’t take long to understand why my mother liked his writing. They were kindred spirits in the way they observed nature and how it flowed and changed around them. Beston’s description of birds both on the dunes and in flight are moving in their eloquence. It’s hard to believe this was written almost 90 years ago.

Our mother shared similar awareness in her Orange Mailbox columns for many years in the Camden Herald. Kate and I inherited some of her traits, but one that we both seem to have run with later in life, is that eye for detail in nature. We’ve become enamored of digital photography. Kate’s sunsets are spectacular. When I was reading Beston’s book yesterday, I realized that my particular fascination with capturing the world around me isn’t so much the big picture as it is the smaller aspects most people miss. The photos that follow are some examples of what I’m talking about. I hope you enjoy looking at them as much as I did taking them.


Caught a piece of this Alaskan glacier as it hit the water.


Ms. Garden Spider was nesting over the library door.


Taken on Grand Manan Island. Always thought it would make a neat cover for a mystery.


I love the silver saddlebag on this bumble bee.


Beth and I stopped at a picnic area on Memorial day last year and this was growing by a stream.


This bittern visited our back yard two years in a row. Kate and I grew up listening to them in Katy Cove.


“Another Fine Mess You’ve Gotten Us Into, Ollie.”


Not sure whether this slide was made by beaver or otters. I took the photo on a back road near Castine about ten years ago.


Saw this while walking on a beach in Perry. Thought the description on the bottle fragment suited the image.


Inspecting the Late Charles Hall’s fine fantasy novel. Sadly, Charles died before completing the series.

More images are posted on my facebook page

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9 Responses to Another Gift From Mom

  1. Lea Wait says:

    Wonderful, evocative, photos, John! Thank you for sharing!~

  2. Anonymous says:

    The details in these are amazing. Fun to read and see.

  3. Barbara Ross says:

    These are wonderful. The one with the doll’s foot is incredibly creepy. The fact that most of us now have a camera with us all the time has made such an impact on how we can see and share our worlds.

    • True about the cameras. One thing that has stuck with me was a quote in a gallery on Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco I saw in 2003. I can’t recall the photographer’s name, but it was a shot of moss in mist beside a waterfall in Yosemite. He said that to get the photo right took three trips over a two year time span to get it right. With digital, we have the luxury of taking multiple photos and, if we’re lucky, one is really good.

  4. Laurie Graves says:

    I’ve never read Beston’s book. One to put on the list. As for your photos…that doll’s foot is very creepy but would make an excellent cover for a mystery novel.

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