Friday, October 21, 2016


The world writes essays in my notebook every day. Or at least paragraphs, yearning, stretching, tugging at my elbow to become essays.

Take the red candle and the red-headed woman in chapel this evening. The candle isn't really red. It's a short, fat white candle in a red glass set in an iron scrollwork holder affixed to the gray stucco pillar some anonymous artisan with a pallet of stucco has decorated with very subtle swirls and flourishes. There are twelve of them around the church, silent memorials of the church's consecration, November 7, 1999, lit on the anniversary and other consecratory days and anniversaries, unlit otherwise. This evening, the candle, unlit as usual, is surmounted by a band of sunlight, unwelcome after a day gray with promises of rain never kept. The woman, a guest, sits alone in the guest pews, as quiet and as still as the candle above her. She is dressed in black and gray, but her flame is a cap of short red hair playing to straw.

Once again the hidden Artist has twirled a brush in the palate of ordinary circumstance to create, however fleeting, a still life moment of quiet beauty.