Seeing Past


In my second novel, one of the themes I'm working with is seeing the past for what it is. Not truth, as truth exists only as long as the thought or image lasts. After that it begins to take on the burden of the seer's perspective, with its unique experiences, knowledge and persuasions. And after that, as it is viewed over time and distance, it becomes history. I see this in Wilde, and I see it in A.S. Byatt; both use their writing to express their own views of history and art. Truth is what we, individually, see and think, and how we watch it change over time and space. On the surface, this is an image of a fence post. What drew my attention to was the alignment of the post with the chapel in the background. In the book, and on a deeper level, this would represent what is past and fading from view (background) and what is now, crisp and clear (foreground), and how they align in our life. This image reflects history rather than truth. Beyond the fact that Henry Ford had this chapel built in 1940 in honor of his mother and his mother-in-law, what is seen in this image will change with everyone who looks upon it.

Martha-Mary Chapel, Longfellow's Wayside Inn, Sudbury, MA, October 2018

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