As memories sink into the subconscious, light bends the appearance of a log on its return to the soft wet earth. Into the waters of time, the slow slide of experience is transformed into the rich material from which myths arise. The still pond dreams of craggy ramparts overrun by a verdant army.
Once there were two lovers who met at a cascading waterfall with three pools. It was love at first sight at the top pool which was crystal clear. The sandy bed cushioned their feet and the surface sparkled in their eyes. The waterfall made the pool full of bubbles tickling their bodies as they swam in bliss.
Eventually they wandered down to the middle pool where the waterfall flowed with less power than at the top. It was warm and pleasant. This emerald green pool mirrored the canopy of the trees. It was so serene that the lovers knew their lives could be spent there. It seemed as if each were a part of the other. Their bodies swam together in perfect synchronicity.
Then they wandered down to the bottom pool, or really more a black pond where the waterfall came to a trickle. It was so dark there under the heavy canopy that it could’ve been a cave.
The lovers accidentally fell into the black pond. It became thick and sticky. The lovers argued about what to do and who got them in this situation as the water became a sludge. Transfixed, they could see faint traces of skeletons intertwined at the center.
When they escaped the black pond and made it back to the middle pool, it appeared differently to them. Not as serene as before. The emerald green pool lost its luster. The canopy was dull and sagging. It was as if the black pond had oozed upstream.
The lovers ran desperately to the top pool. Somehow the top pool had changed but it had become even richer. The effervescence broke on their skin. And as they swam in that most blissful of pools, their bodies transformed into caustics of light.
The camera compresses the world into a frame. The transitory becomes fixed in an illusion. Smoke trapped underwater. Cloud textures trapped in rocks. The horizon is a stroke of ink, or a line of difference, drawn by the camera’s position.
As my consciousness defines what I see, have I not become the calm of a still lake for a passing moment? And what is calm but the sustain of some already faded state? An identity already loosened up and breaking down into something else, as I hold on to the fixed reflection of what it briefly was to me.
What appears as foam from a breaking wave is a hard crust of geyserite. The appearance is soft and the material hard. When I look at this, I alternate between feeling like I’m on a strange beach and at a geyser in Yellowstone. The seascape comes in and out with the tide of the landscape. The experience and the reality clash instead of their usual interlacing. A metamorphosis suspended. Bouncing between two places without ever totally arriving.