Catching beauty on the “drive-by”

From time to time, I will offer a new topic to my blog role:  “My (adopted) hometown — Fort Lauderdale.

Homeward and westward bound, on Oakland Park Boulevard is usually a quite  uninteresting experience.  But once in a while — if one is Aware enough to notice — good things can happen.  A photographer knows that you have to be right there with slit-second timing to catch the right light on your subject.   Photography is about dancing with the light and the shadow, whenever and wherever they seem, um, unusual.  I love to capture such images that invite introspection and reflection. (or at least to try because this photographer also has Parkinson’s;  the sometimes unsteady hand results in sometimes quite unique images   I captured this particular moment on March 30, 2009 at 7:02 pm.  My iphone was nearby; I was probably listening to “Us and Them” on the same device; this Pink Floyd favorite  times perfectly to get me home from downtown if I leave after rush hour. I  steadied it firmly on top of the steering wheel.  The rays of the sun pierced the clouds above and sent a single glance toward us drivers on the ground.

Was that Awareness just for me?  Or did others experience it too?  Are we  (am I?) ready to “catch” beauty on the fly or on the “drive-by”?  Ready for the natural world to dialogue and dance with us?  Ready when it desires to reveal itself?   To surprise us / lift us out of ourselves / connect us with something beyond our self inflated (or deflated) worlds?  This, of course, wasn’t the most awesome sunset I’ve ever experienced.  (I do like to experience them rather than just observe them.) And surely  a couple of green lights, and incongruent light poles made for a less than idylic image.  Nevertheless, it  lifted me out of my homebound / self-bound thoughts and feelings  (whatever they were) into a moment of connection and contemplation with that little part of the cosmos that one humble / connected man, Francis of Assisi 900 years ago greeted as a Person: “Brother Sun.”

Just a thought:  There’s beauty everywhere in every place at every time for those who have eyes to see.  How ’bout you?
With love,

Bob Traupman

priest / writer

One thought on “Catching beauty on the “drive-by”

  1. Loren Christie February 3, 2010 / 3:54 pm

    Beautiful post. Thank you. How cool that you listen to Pink Floyd.

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