Author: Patrick Jennings

I travel, when I can. Write, when inspired. Photograph, where there's beauty. Make films, for a living. Oh, and I play a decent didjiridu.
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Warped, Cathedral of the Madeleine, Salt Lake City, Utah, United States of America

Warped ~ Pic and a Word Challenge #325

I enter a cathedral
As if into warped space
Not warped as a physicist might think
But as in how a mystic might think
That is, a spiritual space or dimension
Bent, folded and manipulated
To conform to a specific configuration
Long ago transcribed into books
From collective memories
Predating written language

Aside from a certain wonder
At the passion and dedication
To the exquisite expression
Of humanity’s greater achievements
In art and architecture
A cathedral reminds me
Of the power of group thinking
For both good and ill
How this can become a tight leash
On an individual whose spirit
Simply refuses to conform

But it also reminds me
Of the exultant satisfaction
I experienced
When I finally broke the leash
Chose my own path
And found my way to a spiritual space
Which conformed to me

Not that I am without
My own warped sense of spiritual dimension
But the distortion is familiar to me
Has meaning for me
And brings me to a place of peace

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God's House, Cathedral of the Madeleine, Salt Lake City, Utah, United States of America

One of Many Paths to Goodness

Raised beneath
Steeples and spires
Kneeling Sitting Standing
In pews row on row

First Holy Communion
Confirmation
Confession
Ash Wednesday
Palm Sunday
Incense and palm leaves
Midnight Mass

Now another confession:
Never a believer
Earliest memories
Saying what was expected
Doing what was expected
Praying aloud the lie on my lips

Though there were Pastors
Two at least
Who made as much
A philosophy of sermon
As theology
Who bespoke love
And compassion
Forgiveness
And kindness
As if these were as important
As believing in Father, Son and Holy Ghost

I kept the compassionate love
Discarded the trinity
And for a long while
Wanted nothing to do
With religion
Or the religious

Until I finally saw
The strength faith gives my mother
Courage, resilience, tenacity
Powered by compassion, love and kindness
All in God’s name

Now I understand
Something about the nature of goodness
And the many paths we may travel
To bring ourselves to the love
Which is its foundation

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Sunrise Over Valley of the Gods, From Moki Dugway, Cedar Mesa, Utah, United States of America

Sunrise Sojourn

I wake
Into darkness
Scramble out of the tent
Enough time to boil water

Coffee
Cereal
Almond milk

The breakfast of
Car camping
Photographers

Pre-dawn
On the horizon
Time to go

Camera bag
Tripod
Fresh brew in the travel mug

On the way
Not far from the campground
Dawn demands a stop
Unexpected glory
In a few hurried frames

Then to the switchbacks
Moki Dugway
Rising twelve hundred feet
Straight up Cedar Mesa

From the top
With the wide zoom
And the fisheye
Then, this one here
On the middle zoom
Expected glory

Deep sigh of success
And anticipation
For the work which takes
A latent image of RAW bits
To the finished photograph
Here