My visual, audio and literary stuff is free here, but my hold-in-your-hands books, prints, and CDs cost real money. If you want to buy something tactile from me, contact me at stujenks at gmail dot com, or message me on Facebook. If you simply want to look and read for free, that's fine too, but don't hesitate to send me your sofa change. My snail mail address is P.O. Box 161, Tucson, Arizona 85702. Keep those cards and letters coming. And sofa change too. Love and light, Stu.
"Wistman's Wood, Dartmoor, United Kingdom" (c) 2013 Stu Jenks
I used to like Halloween as a child, with its Baby Ruth candies, its neighborhood spookiness and it being my mother's birthday too, but I haven't liked the holiday for years. I'm not a big fan that in America many adults use the holiday as an opportunity to express their sexual darkness, or their romanticism of Death, or their drunken angry inner selves. That being said, I do like the reverence of the Christian All Souls' Day, All Saints' Day and the resurgence of The Day Of The Dead celebrations, with personal altars displaying photographs of loved ones gone, and orange marigolds on graves newly cleaned.
I'll be walking in the All Souls' Procession in Tucson this Sunday, but I'm planning a more personal observance this weekend, of this time of the year when the veil between worlds is thin. Next year, I hope to be near Lively, Virginia, sitting on a bench in my family plot on November 1st, small candles burning near the headstones of my mother, father and sister.
Above is a photograph I took of Wistman's Wood last Spring when I was visiting friends in Chagford, Dartmoor. One of the oldest remaining oak wood in all of the UK, beautifully dwarfed by time and wind, Wistman's Wood truly is a sacred place, being its own gateway between earth and sky.
I wish I was there right this second, holding a photo of my family in one hand and a bunch of marigolds in the other. Or if not there, sitting on a marble bench in the Northern Neck of Virginia.
"Scorhill Stone In Thick Deep Mist, Dartmoor, UK" & "Gidleigh Wood Folly, Dartmoor, UK" (c) 2013 Stu Jenks
read Shelagh's map. I thought I knew the way to Scorhill Circle. I did
not. I got lost in Gidleigh Wood. Or rather, as Daniel Boone once said,
"I've never been lost but I've been a might bewildered." That I was.
Yet sometimes when I get lost, I find wonders. I found a folly that evening, a
Victorian building built for no particular use other than to employ the
manor's workers. I asked around. Oddly, no one except one person knew
of this folly. It seemed I wandered onto private land. Oops. One person
said if was where two mad sisters lived a hundred years ago who only
ate snails. The Snail Sisters. OK.
I retraced my steps and
eventually found my way to the Scorhill Circle. Socked in deep mist,
long exposure night photography was out for the mist coated my lens.
Disappointed? Only a little. I sat on a nearby fall stone, had a smoke,
and prayed in the dimming light and the thick damp mist. It was a very
good walk in spite of a very large little toe blister I produced that hobbled me the rest of the trip. It was worth it.
In Tucson again. Wind blowing hard. I love the wind. But I'd be lying if I didn't say I long for mist. Thick deep mist.
Some people leave their hearts in San Francisco. I left a part of mine
in Dartmoor. I may have to return to get that piece back or leave more heart there. I haven't decided yet. Leaning toward the latter.