Photography, Love, and Death

Dear Friends,

Gun violence!


Donald “I am your retribution” Trump!

Income inequality!

Clarence Thomas!

         I spent hours writing a 1,300-word essay on these and other topics for this blog post. Then yesterday we had our Berkeley High School bi-weekly Zoom meeting. As we all checked in, we heard a litany of sad stories: broken hip; broken leg; Alzheimer’s; death of spouse; eye surgery; leg amputation due to diabetes; stroke, etc.

         We are all in our early 80s. We are starting to fall apart. We are heading down the road that leads to the great Zoom meeting in the sky. I get filled with compassion for my wonderful high school friends. Best we can do is to hold each other’s hands. So my political and cultural diatribe began to feel trivial. I tossed it out.

         Considering all of that, I decided I’d rather share with you some content from my new book: A Brief Crack of Light: A Lifetime of Photography and Stories.  One of the final chapters is called: Love, Photography, and Death. It is about how important photography is during the entire arc of our lives, and the lives of our dear friends – and especially at the end of their lives.

Here are a few samples:

On a lighter note, another chapter considers the idea of how photos can capture the passing of time, from a few seconds to to years and decades:

Finally, from Warren Buffet at the recent shareholders’ meeting of Berkshire Hathaway. He is talking about bad investments, but this quote can also apply to the evolution of our lives,

The weeds wither away in significance as the flowers bloom.

From Park and Rec. I rest my case.

Springtime in the garden

6 thoughts on “Photography, Love, and Death

  1. David Binder says:

    Poignant photos and memories, Rick. I have been spending too much time reading and watching the news. It makes me angry. This was a good reminder that I don’t have to be consumed by it all.

  2. Michael Joyce says:

    I asked AI to write a little poem for us about death. And here’s what it had to say:
    Death is not a scary thing ,it’s just a change of state
    . We leave behind our earthly skin
    and enter a new gate.
    We don’t know what awaits us there,
    but we can hope it’s good.
    A place of peace and joy and love
    we’re all is understood
    so don’t be sad when someone dies they’re not really gone
    they’re just exploring a new realm
    and waiting for you to come along.

    We can hope ai got this right. Thanks for your good work over all the years Rick, it’s a blessing to us all.

  3. Mary Warren says:

    What a lovely tribute to loved ones as they died. The universal wish of the dying as I imagine it is to be surrounded by those who matter most in our lives. John still speaks with deep awe of that trip to Robert. He has a kinesthetic memory that moves him to tears of Robert’s hand on his shoulder as he helped him walk. Thanks for this.

  4. Bill Scanlon says:

    As to the quote from Warren Buffet, as I was looking out my window the other day I noticed some beauty provided by a grove of dandelions amid the grass and the thought occurred to me how arbitrary our distinction is between weed and flower.

  5. John Hutchison says:

    Poignant, reflective, thought provoking. I too went through a medical procedure last week. Really makes you think what’s important and what’s left to do.

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