Ando Hiroshige: Evening Shower at Atake and the Great Bridge

hiroshige-awate

There should be noise.

That sound of endless rain,

and distant cloud rumble.

Feet soaked, shoes sodden

splash and thud

across bamboo

where fibres twist and swell

with swaying creaks

disrupting

plop, plops of water

falling into darkness.

For the people on the bridge-

they see only edges

of parasol,

and the hazy burn

of driving rain.

 

For me, I see only silence.

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Coastal Menorca

menorcabeach

Shaded breeze, infused with

earth baked needle pine

caresses skin, salt stung.

Silt sand, amber   

with polished pebble,

roll and sigh to

waves’ rough tussle.

Shrubs low slung, defiant green

cling to falling ridges;

whilst sea, cobalt blue

flashes through

heat cracked, lava licked rock.

This island suffers

Nature’s mercurial whim

and through her fingers

stone, blood red, crumbles.

What Is Your Mission?

Reading from the book of life, a chapter on “Finding your mission” provided a useful insight into creating focus and direction associated with our careers. It’s true, those of us with no plan, are distinctly disadvantaged when we come up against organised planners. The idea behind the concept is finding work purpose towards a service to humanity. It goes beyond our personal needs, but doesn’t have to be a massive and worthy cause, like finding the cure for HIV or malaria. It just needs to be something we can imagine improving the lives of others.

I think I’d like to lessen the psychic stress of individuals living in our current sensory overloaded society, and create visual imagery to remind us of our interconnectedness, vulnerability, and sensitivity in a temporal world of layered complexity.

Fusion

Following the principles of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) I discovered the challenges of fusion. 

In simple terms it’s when our thoughts become the only Truth. Whatever our inner voice says – we just accept. Traditional CBT encourages challenging, and over-riding our loud inner critic. ACT however, endeavours to get us to:

  1. Recognise our inner commentary 
  2. Lessen the impact through observation and acknowledgement, without automatically fusing with the narrative 

Often the biggest challenge (certainly for me) is hearing that voice. It’s become so massively fused I seem to shift through various states of being without time to recognise or cognate what is happening.

Mindfulness is excellent practice to allow time and experience of observing. Sometimes it feels 10 minutes in a day hardly balances out the remaining hours to survive; but it starts to leak out of practice periods and can give surprising STOP moments where I find myself saying: 

I HEAR YOU, AND I KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING