Archive for the ‘Existential Moment’ Category

The Coal Plant Next Door, A Story by ProPublica   Leave a comment

“This story was originally published by ProPublica.” 

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom.

The Coal Plant Next Door

by Max Blau for Georgia Health News

Mark Berry raised his right hand, pledging to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth. The bespectacled mechanical engineer took his seat inside the cherry-wood witness stand. He pulled his microphone close to his yellow bow tie and glanced left toward five of Georgia’s most influential elected officials. As one of Georgia Power’s top environmental lobbyists, Berry had a clear mission on that rainy day in April 2019: Convince those five energy regulators that the company’s customers should foot the bill for one of the most expensive toxic waste cleanup efforts in state history.

When Berry became Georgia Power’s vice president of environmental affairs in 2015, he inherited responsibility for a dark corporate legacy dating back to before he was born. For many decades, power companies had burnt billions of tons of coal, dumping the leftover ash — loaded with toxic contaminants — into human-made “ponds” larger than many lakes. But after a pair of coal-ash pond disasters in Tennessee and North Carolina exposed the environmental and health risks of those largely unregulated dumps, the Obama administration required power companies to stop using the aging disposal sites.

Berry had spent nearly two decades climbing the ranks of Southern Company, America’s second-largest energy provider and the owner of Georgia Power. By the time he was under oath that day, company execs had vowed to store newly burnt coal ash in landfills designed for safely disposing of such waste. But an unprecedented challenge remained: Figuring out what to do with 90 million tons of coal ash — enough to fill more than 50 Major League Baseball stadiums to the brim — that had accumulated over the better part of a century in ash ponds that were now leaking. Read more . . .

Finding The Way   Leave a comment

Finding the Way Through Doubtful Pass– Image by kenne

“Unfortunately I am afraid, as always, of going on. For to go on means going from here, means finding me,
losing me, vanishing and beginning again, a stranger first, then little by little the same as always, in another place,
where I shall say I have always been, of which I shall know nothing, being incapable of seeing,
moving, thinking, speaking,
but of which little by little, in spite of these handicaps, I shall begin to know something,
just enough for it to
turn out to be the same place as always, the same which seems made for me and does not want
me,
which I seem to want and do not want, take your choice, which spews me out or swallows me up, I’ll never know,
which is perhaps merely the inside of my distant skull where once I wandered, now am fixed, lost for tininess, or
straining against the walls, with my head, my hands, my feet, my back, and ever murmuring my old stories,
my old
story, as if it were the first time.”

― from The Unnamable by Samuel Beckett

First Time Fishing   4 comments

Fishing From the Boat Dock — Photo-Artistry by kenne

No bait,
only a bullet weight 

on the end of the line — 
does it really
matter to the boy?

A quiet boy
in a world
all his own
where silence
creates inwardness.

He was six
when this
photograph
was taken all
those years ago.

It’s easy to
wonder what he
was thinking —

‘what’ doesn’t matter
for they were pure.

It is these
moments
sliced out of time —
melancholy with
all its charms.

Moments exist,
otherwise

everything in life
would all happen
at once.

By watching and
connecting with
everything around me,
I have become a
connoisseur of empathy.

— kenne

So the shortest day came . . .   3 comments

Solstice Sunset — Image by kenne

So the shortest day came, and the year died,
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive,
And when the new year’s sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, reveling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us—Listen!!
All the long echoes sing the same delight,
This shortest day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.
Welcome Yule!

— Susan Cooper

The Shortest Day   Leave a comment

Hunters in the Snow– painting by Pieter Bruegel the Eider

As we experience the shortest day of the year, Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s painting, “Hunters in the Snow,” is an almost perfect picture of the contrasting scenes we experience this time of year, depicting isolation and melancholy producing a sense that we are being pulled into a silent landscape where the deep drifts of snow where you can “feel the cold and sense the audible dullness as the landscape sucks the sound from every little human vignette.” 

His paintings are beautiful because his compositions make one of the opposites, based on Eli Siegel’s principle of aesthetic realism: “All beauty is a making one of opposites, and the making of one of the opposites is what we are going after in ourselves.”

opposites are one

composing yesteryear’s coldness

stretching through time

standing still in the moment
 

searching the unrestricted

working with opposites

reassuring in sameness
 

emphasizing divergence

promising order

pleasing to self

— kenne

Canyon Trail   Leave a comment

Phoneline Trail In Sabino Canyon — Image by kenne

the phoneline trail
where hikers experience
a path from the past

— kenne

Drawing In The Sand   2 comments

Drawing In The Sand — Image by kenne

He draws in the sand

She watches the tide

Soon to wash away

Leaving behind a surface

Ready for another day.

— kenne

Dragonfly Art   2 comments

Red-veined Darter Dragonfly– Photo-Artistry by kenne

“The more sand that has escaped from the hourglass of our life,
the clearer we should see through it.”

― Jean-Paul Sartre

Wilderness of Rocks Trail   3 comments

Wilderness of Rocks Trail In the Santa Catalina Mountains — Image by kenne

“One recognizes one’s course by discovering the paths that stray from it.”

– Albert Camus

 

Shelter In The Storm   1 comment

Shelter In The Storm — Photo-Artistry by kenne

Cabin abandoned

Hikers aware of a storm

Seeking some shelter.

— kenne

David Hidalgo – Cortez The Killer   Leave a comment

David Hidalgo, Los Lobos Guitarist — Photo-Artistry by kenne

Cortez the Killer
 
He came dancing across the water
With his galleons and guns
Looking for a new world
A palace in the sun
On the shore lay Montezuma
With his cocoa leaves and pearls
In his halls he often wondered
The secrets of the worlds
Oh, and his subjects gathered round him
Like leaves around a tree
In their clothes of many colors
For the angry gods to see
And the women all were beautiful
And the men stood straight and strong
They offered life in sacrifice
So that others could go on
 
Hate was just a legend
And war was never known
The people worked together
And they lifted many stones
They carried them to the flat-lands
And they died along the way
They built up with their bare hands
What we still can’t build today
And I know she’s living there
And she loves me to this day
I can still remember when
Or how I lost my way
 
Cortez, Cortez
He came dancing across the water
Cortez, Cortez
 
Came dancing across the water
 
Came dancing across the water
Cortez, Cortez
Dancing across the water
Dancing across the water
Dancing across the water
Came dancing across the water
Cortez, Cortez
Dancing across the water
Dancing across the water
Dancing across the water
 
— Neil Young
 
 

The Great Chris Duarte   1 comment

Chris Duarte at the Cactus Moon, Humble, Texas (January 2003) — Images by kenne

When it comes to Blues/Rock guitar players, Texas has produced some of the best.
I saw Chris live several times in the late ’90s and early ’00s, and each time his
performance
drained me. He is very intense and emotional — literally mindblowing.

— kenne

Female Phainopepla Photo-Artistry   Leave a comment

Female Phainopepla — Photo-Artistry by kenne

“I look at the bird and only slowly over the years see it /

who has seen me from the first”

— from Hen Harrier Poems by Colin Simms

 

Somewhere In Our Past   Leave a comment

Kenne & Joy Many, Many Years Ago –Those Were The Days!

We are not alone.
The world is changing,
and we  are part of that transformation.
The angels guide and protect us.

— Paulo Coelho

AI Wasteland   Leave a comment

 Human Condition — Abstract Art by kenne

We are doomed
if we can meet
only by Zoom

spending each day
looking at some device
sighing in dismay

being told to stand
from a heart alert
in this AI wasteland.

— kenne

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