Thursday, August 16, 2007

The Heart Can be a Fossil

The Heart Can be a Fossil
Originally uploaded by Seeking Tao

More stories, people.

1) Whatever you do, she said, don't wait too long or you'll have to start from the very beginning & those new bodies are always kind of a crapshoot.

2) This is a lighthouse that only warns you if you're likely to pay attention because you've been told the world is a dangerous place before.
( StoryPeople )

Actually, this is an approximately 320 million year old Brachiopod fossil I found when I was 12,
in an abandoned strip-mine behind my cousins’ farm in southern Illinois.
We were playing hide and seek. But I had run so far and hidden so well, I kind of ended up all by myself in this other world.
I started finding all these fossils and
Suddenly, I knew there used to be on ocean over Illinois.
History had depth.
Where I walked, once had a totally different look and feel.
It was another world.

Just like that, there was so much mystery and beauty lying all about me.
I resolved to come back the next morning while the others still were sleeping.
I’d come back by myself.
I’d bring a bag
maybe a shovel.

This fossil was a very delicate specimen, different from any other I have ever found, composed of a fine, white crystalline material.
The other side of the shell had cracked away - and the whole, little, soft-bodied fellow
who once lived inside had also become fossilized.

So once I got it home, I lift the body from the shell, and embedded the two specimens
in separate blocks of polymerizing plastic for protection.

They've been like that for over forty years now.
Sometimes, I overlay the two blocks so I can see just how, originally, the soft parts
Lay within the shell.
I perfect their alignment, shift the blocks back and forth, like one might shuffle cards.

I like the blocks, but sometimes I regret what I did
So long ago.
No air, nothing living will ever get past all that plastic.
I can’t really touch the treasure I discovered as a child.

But it’s been safe all that time.
And it catches the Light falling on it so remarkably that
its beauty can rivet my attention from across the room.

So, from time to time, I try to take a picture that really does that Light justice.

I never quite get it right.
Not yet.

It's hard to say the right words without practice, I said & she whispered in my ear, Say them as many times as you like & we practiced late into the night.

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