reflections on wild geese

levitation attempt


That was my best shot at lev­i­tat­ing so far. 

I was actu­al­ly try­ing to take pho­tos of a sweater I cro­cheted (in one piece in a side­ways man­ner, I’m hop­ing to post the pat­tern soon). The way I posi­tioned the cam­era was too low and could­n’t cap­ture the entire skirt, so I decid­ed to take a jump­ing shot, inspired by Nat­su­mi Hayashi’s lev­i­tat­ing self-portraits.

Hav­ing been fol­low­ing Nat­sum­i’s posts for a cou­ple of years, I’ve found that the key to lev­i­ta­tion (as opposed to just jump­ing) in a pho­to shoot is that one has to jump while relax­ing one’s shoul­ders and arms. 

It’s actu­al­ly quite dif­fi­cult. A lot of con­trolled coor­di­na­tion needs to hap­pen in a frac­tion of a second.

In this pho­to I cer­tain­ly still looked like I was jump­ing, but I like the way my arm and hand look in the light.


I’ve been stressed on many fronts lately. 

The para­dox of jump­ing — a surge of ener­gy to pro­pel one­self off the ground against grav­i­ty — while being relaxed was actu­al­ly quite enlight­en­ing when I thought about my recent encoun­ters with conflict.

What this makes me real­ize is that, in con­flict, I have to learn to sus­tain a clear and calm state of mind in the face of height­ened emo­tions. Height­ened emo­tions that threat­ens to derail my thoughts and actions.

It’s actu­al­ly quite difficult.


Real­iz­ing that it’s dif­fi­cult, and fear­ing that it might be impos­si­ble for me to ever do well, I find this poem comforting.

Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hun­dred miles through the desert, repent­ing.
You only have to let the soft ani­mal of your body
love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Mean­while the world goes on.
Mean­while the sun and the clear peb­bles of the rain
are mov­ing across the land­scapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the moun­tains and the rivers.

Mean­while the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are head­ing home again.
Who­ev­er you are, no mat­ter how lone­ly,
the world offers itself to your imag­i­na­tion,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and excit­ing –
over and over announc­ing your place
in the fam­i­ly of things.

– Mary Oliver


May we all find clar­i­ty and com­pas­sion today.