Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Pilot whales, Humpbacks and Dolphins.

Last week, I had the amazing fortune of photographing pilot whales in the Pacific deep blue. The pod was generous and I was able to take this picture on my second drop in, and it was extraordinary. I had been in the water with them in the Kingdom of Tonga, several years ago. During my first experience with them, they were hunting and pelagic sharks were in tow. At that time, I was struck by their incredible grace and linear swimming. They passed by in rows, their dark skin was a sharp contrast against the Tongan clear blue waters.
The picture below is from my most recent Hawaiian encounter just a few days ago. I love this picture because it shows how much their skin shins and reflects light. 

This time they were traveling, but curious. They bobbed their heads to the surface and spy hopped for several minutes before I was in the water with them.  
These gentle beauties are residents of the local waters. Their scientific name is Globicephala. They survive primarily on squid and are thought to dive deeper during the night. They tend to travel in pods and like orcas have a matrilineal family structure. 
What I love about documenting cetaceans in the wild, is observing how their tales move through the waters as they swim on the surface, how they travel in pods and observing their incredible navigation from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sea. 
Below is humpback tail taken at the surface, spinner dolphins swimming in pods along the bottom and a beautiful bamboo trunk, the ridges that remind me of the formation of a dolphin pod.

Each time that I enter the ocean with my camera, my curiosity and desire to learn more widens. I fall in love again, each and every time. Below is a magical tide pool filled will colorful coral and delicate yellow and black fish called Hawaiian sergeant fish, these beauties reminded me of the coherence in nature, repeated patterns and the delicate and elegant natural language that we speak with one another through our physiology. 

In the next year, I am refining and editing my photographs to create a book that has been asking to be printed. It has been over ten years that I have been documenting the seas and observing mother nature's grace while trailing behind countless cetaceans. 
I am grateful to everyone who takes the time to read my posts and support my underwater work. As the days grow longer and the local waters begin to warm, I am eagerly expecting the return of cetaceans to the East End. 

Saturday, February 17, 2018

The Pele Report.

Yellow Fronted Canaries and Saffron Finches grace the coastline, as they sing in tandem flying quickly among the tree tree tops. Darting from one branch to the next they search out sweet treats and sing their magical song. 
They are accompanied by bright green geckos drinking sweet fruit nectars and crimson orchids
sharing their delicate blooms.

Pods of dolphins surf the waves and spin freely over coral reefs, while misty clouds cover the towering tropical trees. Sea urchins gently dance in small volcanic pools filled with broken shells, coral and miniature purple snails while shy quick crabs snag morsels from the black rocks in between gentle waves. 

Curious spinner dolphins. 

A strong and tumultuous rain cleared Pele's clouds and smoke. The power of nature has revisited me from the inside out and I am always in awe when I feel this kind of natural reorganization. 
It feels as though these deep realignments are needed at this time. Sometimes deep sighs of knowing and salty tears accompany these moments of recognition. 

Each and every element has its place in the wholeness of nature. In keeping with the changing rhythms of nature, I have taken every opportunity to take pictures of anyone willing to sit with me and my camera. I am so deeply grateful to all of the beauties I was able to connect with, while Pele's presence embraced us, she watched all of us meet under her fiery and tender gaze. 

Thank you dolphins, and whales for your gentle presence and generosity. 

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

New Year and a Super Moon.

It has been a vibrant day, the moon filled the night sky with much beauty and goodness. Last night this elegant luna illuminated the sky filled with stars and kissed our dreams goodnight. 
I waited until the sky was clear and the fog had lifted to capture the sparkle of the surface of the moon. 
The photograph of the sweet bird was aboard a research trip for whales this past Summer. This little beauty pecked for crumbs on the deck of the fishing boat that took us to the whales in the Great South Channel. I came across the picture of this little gem and the shimmer of light on the water in the open ocean, just yesterday. 
All three images tell a story to me, about fullness, innocence, simplicity, dreams and hope. 
In these very unsteady times of change, coming back into the elegance of the natural word has been incredibley important, and meaningful for me. Every day, I watch how the natural world is negotiating the cold, how the light changes from darkness to light again and observing what is possible if we settle into deep winter sleeps, long rests and more contemplation and study. 

I have been studying more about how the cold can enter the body and influence our physiology. I am   giving moxa, adding blankets, extra warmth and nourishing Kidney Yin in my treatments. 
As cold injures the blood, it is especially important to add blood building foods during these cold spells. It is equally important to eat warm cooked foods and wear layers of fibers that can hold the warmth of the body close to the surface. Silk is especially helpful for keeping in warmth. 

As I was making tea this morning in the first light of the day, the full moon was upon us and this image of the turtle and the snake came into my awareness. This is an image from a text of mine that describes the animals from the cold waters of the North. 
The water droplets gathered from the steam on the windowpane and the wilting rhododendron leaves cast a beautiful shadow on the glass. All of these images came together for this post, with the addition of a beautiful succulent in flower that was gifted to me over the holidays. 
Wishing everyone much warmth and a beautiful super red and blue moon!

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Transient Beauties.

For a few days the lights were out. 
The strong tropical winds met our lands on the east end.
They appeared with a damp heat that made one wonder... "where are these breezes coming from?"
Big old rotten, nutrient rich trees came down and the geometry of the land shifted over night.
The light here has changed, it is new again. 
Mother nature and her very powerful transient beauties showed up this week, she shows up in so many different ways. 
For a few days, there wasn't the electrical current that keeps our nervous systems buzzing and alert. My system settled deeply. In turn, there were very deep restful sleeps that came up through the earth.
Moments arose to drop in deeper to the practice of listening with grace and minding the presence of the tides and winds.  

A katydid showed up on the last autumn flowers for a long intimate visit at my front door. It shared with me how willing it is to take chances and spring forth when the timing is right. We spent close to an hour together, and it showed its' curiosity towards me and showed me an elegant dance... from side to side. Followed by the gift of glorious dahlias, and a day at the beach in Amagansett,  accompanied by a late blooming morning glory. 
Each day now feels feels like a new universe, new visions, insights and profound healings.
I can not remember a time in my many turns around the sun that I have experienced such a quickening around the center of the earth. 
As we are moving forward in this time of unprecedented change, in the curious quick dance of reorganization, it is all for growth. 
 I am wishing everyone grace, centering, embodied presence  and illumination as we are leaning  towards the greater good and a more peaceful connection to the rhythms of the natural world. 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Swimming with Seagulls and the Snowy Egret.

The September light has been truly delicious. 
Warm and settling. 
Amazing for swimming with seagulls.
And for being still.
 In the bays, there are a plethora of winged beauties taking advantage of the plentiful food. 

The snowy egret, the peacemaker among fisherman, and a symbol of balance, showed up yesterday at Louse Point. This beauty took my breath away. Since my meeting with this majestic bird,  I have been learning about them and how they fish, migrate and stand so beautifully in the water.
As they hunt, they gracefully turn sideways and they catch their prey from an angle.
They watch for spearing, then dart into the water with such intensity and speed that one has to watch closely to be able to see what happens next. 

And then there is a quick gulp. 
And a swollen neck. 
Followed by more tracking and more fishing. 

The light in this image came from the setting sun at Accabonac harbor and fell graciously over the apricot sands of Louse Point which were indented with the footprints of many visitors. 
The light was clear and crisp. The baitfish were literally splashing out of and flying through the indigo waters.
The yellow and greens of this majestic bird are mesmerizing, and captivating.

All the while, this beautiful sandpiper moved quickly between the water and the stones on the shore at dusk yesterday. Back and forth, and back and forth. 

And this anxious seagull, looked for its next meal.

These days are so precious and meaningful. 
Life moves quickly and reminds us to take in the magic and to swim with seagulls before the sun cools. 

Monday, September 4, 2017

The Beauty of Wings

The beauty of having wings is that they allow for us to fly. 
With them, we may visit far away places that are quite beautiful. 
This evening as the sun began to set as Louse Point,  this beauty was eating fish and flashing perfect grace in the soft September sun. 

While I am working, I often imagine the scapula as a portal to the metaphor for soaring and flying. We all have these incredible bones that are often referred to as the seat of our human wings. 
In Chinese medicine, the pathway or meridian that runs through the scapula is the Small Intestine channel. The Small Intestine is the partner to the Heart. The Fire Element. The channel leads to the all knowing Emperor. So when I am treating the Heart, I always touch into the Small Intestine first, to send a very soft and gentle message to the Emperor, asking, if it is ok to proceed. 
Sometimes the Emperor says 'please wait and rest here a bit', and so we do. 
Holding space for the wisdom of the wings to speak the needs of the Heart. 

Friday, September 1, 2017

The Secret Lives of Hummingbirds. Part Three.

Sometimes loves comes in waves.
Other times, it comes in small ripples and there are occasional swells that wash gently over our fickle hearts. Then there are the moments where in the flash of a nanosecond, it hits us and we are done. Swallowed in the deep blue sweet goodness, like a vortex into the ocean of the unknown. 
The later happened today. 
This male hummingbird who has been wreaking havok in my otherwise quiet garden, made me fall in love with him. His ruby red feathers that flashed me days on end, pulled me in, and I fell for him. It was a slow and curious dance. 
Today, he won my heart.

After three weeks of not allowing me into his field, we fell into one another and shared a space that was safe and warm. The remnants of the flower garden are fading hourly and miss Flora is feeding as quickly as she can before she leaves. 
Today he let me in and surrendered to my curiosity and proximity.
I took this image at dusk as the light was shifting into Autumn. 
He will be flying South any day now and is allowing me to get closer with my camera and new lens. It is a Sigma 160-500. I now have countless images of him, his green emerald feathers, white soft chest and his brilliant ruby flashy necklace. 
But what captures my interest the most are his eyes. Here the soul resides. 
Just as when I photograph whales, and dolphins, I always want to see and feel the depth of who I am meeting and what they may have to share with me in that intimate moment. 
So as this secret and almost sacred world of the hummingbird opens to me, bit by bit, I am blessed with these fleeting moments and tender connections between my curiosity and their willingness to be still.