Month: November 2021

Dust and Gilt

© Matthew Word Bain

antique store in an antique town
it’s hard to tell sometimes
if they’re ever open for business
although it’s clear they have inventory
gilded decorations and ancient typewriters
all of them gaining a fresh new layer
albeit at an imperceptible pace
of that fine floating detritus
as it settles upon them to rest

How Does Your Garden Grow?

© Matthew Word Bain

sometimes in a dream a scene like this
makes me wonder if its time to clean house
do some accounting, and let some things go
things that no longer serve, perhaps
on account of how I’ve been treating them
leaving them exposed to the weather
not even mowing the lawn they occupy
old visions, beliefs that have expired
perceptions of self and others
perspectives I no longer occupy
imagine the garden that could grow
if I gathered up and carried away
all these things I no longer use
and those which no longer serve me

Old Friends

© Matthew Word Bain

gas tank and a metal box
sitting quietly out back
strapped in and ready for travel
while the grass grows, indifferent
beneath their round feet
in an alley with color
and texture
framed by power
lines in the sky, an avenue
of rich green trees and gravel
on the ground before
an uncluttered backdrop
a wall freshly painted
beneath a clean white roof
waiting, patient

Deep Glow

© Matthew Word Bain

I never even needed to look at my hands
it was by this light I knew that I was dreaming
light like this is not just the sun shining down
but the light of awareness that glows from within
luminous emptiness pervading illusory form
what a magical playground to wander through
anything could happen, you could meet anyone
and everything about it is always infused
with this liberating, mind-altering light
throughout the dream I let it lead me

Dream Within a Stream

© Matthew Word Bain

in a change of scene
one finds only in dreams
I find myself drawn in
by a gentle rushing whisper
and suddenly kneeling
beside this stream
inhaling new strength
from its green leafy shade
which now bears me up
onto the street above
my breath now
its susurration
its flow now
my dream

Skate Park Dream

© Matthew Word Bain

I dreamed I was Frank Gehry
relegated to reclaimed timber
and a shoestring budget
confined to a small town
on the edge of the Alleghenies
devoting my final years to reworking
Merriweather Post to the tune of titanium

Cycles of Elegance

© Matthew Word Bain

architectural details like these
seem to cry out for a certain attention
and yet, what sort of attention might that be
is it not the touch of time, that careful caress
wind and water, hot sun and hard frost
the constant cosmetics of cosmology
beauty hard earned by ancients
texture, color, and the sort
of je ne sais quoi that comes
from authentic self shining through
laid bare by the exfoliating sands of time
a luminosity of awareness glowing from within
revealed by the removal of all that otherwise obscures –
the materiality of newness traded in for the essence of age

Such Stuff as Dreams

© Matthew Word Bain

an image from a dream
perhaps, or so it seems to me
and I was there – wandering, in a daze
wondering at the ways the scene would change
as I found myself walking around an unknown town
in one moment, underground, crouched down by flowing water
the next, on the street in a light that seemed itself to glow from within
a gilded grey infused with the soul of pastels, the light of the golden hour
on a day when the sun has dropped below a bank of clouds in the late afternoon
leaving the whole town awash in the most subtle splendor, a deep luminosity
that seemed to pervade all and glorify everything and everyone
and me just floating through it, a newcomer, just a visitor
happy to be in such a strange and beautiful land
content to let the place contain my curiosity
as I wandered and wondered and wended my way
careful not to come awake – at least not just yet…
if I lie still here a little while longer
I might find my way back
into the dream…

Digital Stream

© Matthew Word Bain

After a brief dip in luxuriant coldness downstream, I hiked up the path a ways to find a suitable spot for recording. This time I was dressed for being in the water, and I brought appropriate gear for positioning the camera and microphones in the water in case I found that was the location of the best vantage.

I recorded this video and another just a few yards downstream. I’ve been finding it difficult to focus on the white water of a scene like this, particularly on such a small screen as my camera affords. I also find that invites my eye to wander to the edges as a viewer, so a tradeoff, perhaps…

The sound was more interesting to me in this location than in the last; a creek is a soundscape of endless variety, and the more interaction at the surface between water and objects in its way, the more endless the variety in any one place.

Aside from fades, I did edit this image other than as I would normally do for a still image; the sound editing is similarly minimal. My vision is to make the visual element of a recording like this imperceptibly dynamic, so you can imagine that the camera is engaging you with its movement beneath the level of your conscious awareness…

MOR Is Less

© Matthew Word Bain

the end of an era
of cheap convenience
that turns out to be expensive
and also inconvenient
like a lot of things have been…

surely we can find more
authentic measures of quality
than money and convenience
measures more relevant
in our immediate experience
as well as in the long run

what impact does commerce
have on the culture and well being
of the people in my community?

what does the short term gain
of venture capital investors
have on the health of the planet?

to whom is something convenient?
to whom is any transaction beneficial?
who benefits from the sale of junk food?

I look forward to the Food Festival
and have high hopes for a new level
of expense and inconvenience
that turns out to be inexpensive
and convenient, possibly even
Slow, food – the kind you have to
sit down to enjoy with others