Monday, August 31, 2009

monday 31 august

yellow leaves
drift across
the library steps

I'm lucky that Seattle's budget deficits and cuts to city services don't usually affect me much, but closing the library for a week makes me want to organize a bake sale or put a tip jar by the check out counter or something.

Even is shut down. That's just indecent.

So, on another grey morning, with wailing ferry fog horns as the soundtrack, the last day of August is off to a melancholy start. Autumn is in the headlights.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

sunday 30 august

the fog horn
still reverberating
in my chest

Beach Drive at 11am looks like Juneau in November; I can hardly see the shoreline at my feet. A short drive up the hill and we're back to Seattle in August. It never fails to amaze me how different the weather can be down on the beach compared to up in the Admiral district -- especially in winter when it's raining down here and there's two inches of snow up there!

Just as I was sketching Harbor West (I'm not sure I'd have the guts to live on those stilts in Elliott Bay), a flock of Canadian geese flew into Cormorant Cove. In keeping with the weekend theme, I'll call their addition to the sketch "unscripted."

Saturday, August 29, 2009

saturday 29 august

late summer rain
tasting autumn
on the breeze

Well, I can cross off #783 on Life's To-Do List: I've been booted off a film set.

The crew apparently didn't know you can get into the park a lot of different ways than the main one. So, I walked right through them all and then stopped to sketch. It didn't take long for some guy to stroll up and look at my sketch.

"Just double checking what you were doing." We had a pleasant little chat about the irony of filming sci-fi in old growth forest and he walked back down to the gathering . Only to reappear by my side minutes later.

"So, the director just wants to make sure you're not making any money off this..." "It's proprietary. you know..."

"The tents?? Am I making him uncomfortable? Does he want me to leave?"

"Well ... yeah."

I considered pursuing my artistic freedom to sketch trees and tents with the director, but decided we both had better things to do.

So, just for the record, this sketch is not for sale.

Friday, August 28, 2009

friday 28 august

in late summer
everything is temporal
except the creeksong

In the seven years I've been sketching in Schmitz Preserve Park, I've come across many things for the first time. But never a porta potty at the Admiral Avenue entrance.

Upon closer inspection, a "Filming Notification" had been posted. A "short film" is being shot here by Temporal Studios this weekend, from 6am -10pm both days, and some of the park won't be available to visitors. I guess they aren't interested in any walk ons/throughs. See the link on the West Seattle Blog!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

thursday, 27 august

moss green glass
warm august light reflects
deep in the woods

Predicted high today was 86. Summer's last gasp before it gets 86ed.

OK. So I just had to google 86ed. Merriam-Webster says it's rhyming slang for "nixed." Hmmm... The least expected explanation (courtesy of Brian on urbandictionary) is that it refers to the Empire State Building. "The observation deck (which for a period of time was a popular suicide jump point) is on the 86th floor... A suicide from the observation deck was referred to as having 86ed himself." Geez Louise.

I'm buying into the theory that Article 86 of the New York State Liquor Code defines the circumstances in which a bar patron should be refused alcohol: hence, '86ed'.

Anyway, the shade was great today, but may need to stay warm in the sun tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

wednesday 26 august

no matter how small
there's enchantment
in a waterfall

Hope the haiku police don't find out i rhymed two lines; I think that's pretty much illegal.

SPP has maybe six or ten small waterfalls, each with its own sweet unique song. They were singing surprisingly loudly this morning, considering the season is growing late and this must be one of Seattle's driest summer on record, so no rain adding any volume to the creek(s).

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

25 august 2009

infinitesimally —
stones in the creek

A few years ago when the Parks Dept. daylighted Duwamish Creek, and put in these three big rocks as stepping stones, they were really high. Now they have sunk deeply into the creek bed.

Although not deeply enough for some:
"That's one small step for man; one large leap for... a pug." Yesterday I came down the path and saw a pug hovering on the middle rock, apparently afraid to make the final step across. After much coaxing, the owner got him to cross to the other side.

Now I can't get the lyrics to "Stuck in the middle with you" out of my brain. Argh.

Monday, August 24, 2009

24 august 2009

just this small page
is enough for me while others
need a large canvas

In Schmitz Preserve Park, the base of the Admiral Avenue bridge is an ever-changing blank slate for the local graffiti artists. And for the last couple of years, it HAS seemed more like art than vandalism. For a long time we had 'aliens' but for quite a while it's been fishes and almost Hokusan-like waves. Slowly that's getting painted over, but its longevity seems to indicate some sort of peer respect.

But in this only dark, concrete place in the park, I mostly enjoy it. Why does graffiti seem to be a young persons' form of expression? What about it do we 'outgrow'?

Sunday, August 23, 2009

23 august 2009

Not in the forest today: day two of a letterpress printing workshop at Windowpane Press.

Wow. I am full of respect. My only experience with type drawers had been as decorative accessories on the wall. Working in a garage with 300 drawers of type and lined with bookcases containing more than I could imagine about paper, books and printing, was a trip. Thinking of people handsetting newspapers, or even setting type by candlelight in Gutenberg's time truly boggled the mind.

The highlight for me was operating the platen press to "blind print" (print with no ink, sort of like embossing) a moon (using an upper case 'O' in Belwe 64pt) on my postcards with a Wallace Stevens quote about moonlight not yet being written in a book.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

22 august 2009

urban forest -
years of passing the same plants
not knowing their names

Most mornings I go for a walk in Schmitz Preserve Park, the home of the only old growth forest within Seattle's city limits, and do a little sketch and try to note my thoughts in a haiku format.

The title of an Alan Fletcher book stuck with me and seemed the perfect name for this combination of pictures and poems.