contemplative photography

Imperfectly Perfect—Contemplative Photography

There is a philosophy in Japanese art called wabi sabi. It’s not easily defined, however, and my understanding of it is growing daily. In this way of thinking, one understands that nothing is permanent and nothing is completely perfect; there are, though, perfect imperfections. And those imperfections make something “perfect.” It’s a paradox.

Even Robert Frost the poet recognized that nothing is permanent or perfect in the poem “Nothing Gold Can Stay.”

Nature’s first green is gold
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

I am terrible about knowing the names of the plants and bushes and flowers that grow around my home. But we have this bush that grows around the pond with these wonderful feathery flowers, I guess you call them. They last just a short time, and then they become seeds blowing in the wind.


In just a few days, these “feathers” open up and become this:


Soft, ethereal, transient. . . . “Nothing gold can stay.”

By Olivia Fulmer

I am the OliviaIrene of OliviaIrene Photography. I am a photographer, a teacher, a story teller. I use this space to tell stories of life, family, and faith through words and images. I'd love to share your stories as well. Join me in this journey.

I love conversation, the close, intimate kind amongst friends. Won't you join me? I look forward to a good coze.

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