Sunday, June 30, 2013

A June Poem

at the lake

It’s entirely conceivable that life’s splendor surrounds us all, and always in its complete fullness, accessible but veiled, beneath the surface, invisible, far away. But there it lies—not hostile, not reluctant, not deaf. If we call it by the right word, by the right name, then it comes. This is the essence of magic, which doesn’t create but calls. ~Kafka

Here's a poem I wrote this past week, inspired by a visit to our community lake. My photo was taken there, too. I'm linking up with Poets United, a wonderful blog where you can share your poetry each Sunday - thank you for stopping by!


Circles of thought spin
Atop the lake's water
As a tree, sun-kissed
And languid, bends over
Intently to see the words
Sensing at its roots
That the source
Is actually deep
Beneath the surface
Beyond its reflection

The sky's vault unlocks
Scent of blue air wafts
Moving through the
Spiral of my inner ear
To that soul spot
Where a poem flies free
Like a bird, its beak
Carrying the words
I don't speak, its
Feathers tickling
My tender heart place

A lone wren's music
Brims like liquid
Over the horizon's rim
An oak branch shifts
The bold sun flicks, and
A pollen-gorged bee
Slumbers and dreams
Nestled inside the
Velvety soft spikes
Of a lilac.

© Sherri Brannon

Sunday, June 23, 2013


full moon


The humming of a million cicadas
I am astonished by their singing
These spiny, groping things
With translucent wings

Their underground swarming
Syncs up with the arrival of mine
I have caught their spirit, I am
A shell of my self, my
Red eyes, my white noise

It is evening and they are silent
I lie awake aching, thinking
Of mundane things: a sponge
Full of holes and water, a pale
Arm yearning to grab at the moon

Finally, a restless sleep,
A temporary release
From the dread my spine
Has memorized

I dream I am flying, sloppily at best,
Landing, loose and stumbling,
Trampling a field of closed-up
Flowers, wandering fear-filled
In the dark of my midnight hours.

© Sherri Brannon

I have "caught" menopause. It's unpleasant enough that I like to think of it as a virus, and hopefully there's a quick cure? Insomnia and increased anxiety are two things I do not need in my life, thank you very much. You always hear about the hot flashes, but not the added pleasures of being sleep deprived and on edge!

The sudden onset of symptoms took me by surprise, just as the arrival of the cicadas did. And how interesting that both these invasions arrived in my life at the same's as if mother nature brought the cicadas to bring home the point that life is often chaotic. One moment there was peace and silence in our neighborhood, and the next there were millions of these deafening, spiny insects overtaking every square inch of our property...a literal invasion. They were noisy, and pesky, and intrusive...just like the menopause symptoms invading my body.

Needless to say, I'm ready for them both to's a poem I wrote, and it's my submission for this week's Poets United. There's nothing worse than the turmoil of a sleepless night...when your brain seeks out every worry as you toss and turn, with bouts of restless slumber in between. I tried to capture that with my words.

This, too, shall pass...of that I'm certain. For anyone who is also dealing with this, you have my deepest sympathy!

NOTE: The photo was taken with my iPhone - last night's beautiful, full moon. The app I used was Scratchcam.

My heart trembles like a poor leaf.
The planets whirl in my dreams.
The stars press against my window.
I rotate in my sleep.
My bed is a warm planet.
~Marvin Mercer

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Light Trumps Darkness

Queen Anne's lace

There’s always going to be bad stuff out there. But here’s the amazing thing — light trumps darkness, every time. You stick a candle into the dark, but you can’t stick the dark into the light. ~Jodi Picoult

I took this picture of some Queen Anne's Lace in my back yard a few weeks was the perfect photo to share with Kim Klassen's Texture Tuesday today. I love how the delicate white flower positively glows against the deep green of the forest. It lights up the whole photo. It perfectly represents who Kim is...for those of you who don't know her, she's an absolutely lovely presence in the blog world and has used her vast knowledge of photography and editing to teach thousands of people how to better process their photos. And she doesn't just teach - her huge heart and positive spirit can be felt through the computer screen and you can't help but be affected by her light. It's because of Kim that I have this blog and find such joy in taking photos (and processing both my images and art in PSE). Everything I know about PSE is because of her classes. She is the kindest teacher you could ever meet and I highly recommend her online courses.

This photo also represents that in every darkness, there is always the light of faith and hope to help you through. Kim's family has been dealt a blow recently as her husband fights leukemia...despite this health scare for her family, her strong spirit carries on and it's heartwarming to hear of all the love and support Kim and her husband are receiving from family and community. I hope she feels all the prayers and good thoughts coming her way from everyone who cares about her in the online world, too. I will continue sending daily prayers that her husband beats this cancer and makes a complete recovery. Light trumps darkness, every time.


Monday, June 17, 2013

Digital Fun

flowers on book page

flowers on book page

When you work regularly, inspiration strikes regularly. ~Gretchen Rubin

It always frustrates me that when life gets busy and I feel stressed, creative time is the first thing to go. I need to work on that. I can't believe it's been almost two weeks since I last posted on my schedule has been hectic and today is the first free day I've had in awhile. I thought I'd check in with the blog world and wave hello!

Before things got crazy, I did have fun with some digital editing. I wanted to share a couple edits I worked on with a very quick drawing I did of two flowers on a book page. I put them in PSE and played around with layers, textures, etc. and came up with two very different looks. So much fun, and very therapeutic to just get lost in the process! I don't know what I'd do with these two images, but the end results were very satisfying.

I hope to start processing some photos I've taken in recent weeks very soon...I have a month's worth to look through and will post some favorites. I hope all my fellow blog friends are doing well...thank you for stopping by!

Original Drawing:

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

iPhoneography Love

iphone fun

iphone fun

iphone fun

iphone fun

iphone fun

I have things in my head that are not like what anyone taught me—shapes and ideas so near to me, so natural to my way of being and thinking. ~Georgia O’Keeffe

I've been hard on myself lately because I haven't been taking photos with my "real" camera...but when I think about it, I AM taking photos, and I'm also being very creative. I'm finding that my iPhone is as satisfying to me as taking photos and processing them in Photoshop Elements. The apps available for iPhones can do such amazing things! And as you play and experiment, you find your own "style" and preferences just like with any other art medium.

With my summer so busy, it's harder to find time to go on photo outings with my real camera, but I always have my iPhone with me and can snap shots anywhere, even while out running errands. Later in the evening, I can sit and have fun processing them while watching TV. It has become a relaxing routine I am loving quite a lot. Even the most basic shots can be turned into artistic images with the incredible apps that are available. A lot of my images are taken in parking lots, or while sitting in my car at stop lights!

Do you find yourself in this same predicament with your iPhone versus your "real" camera? Here are a few favorites from the past week. Two new apps I'm completely smitten with are Mextures and Mystic. Mextures has fantastic textures that add so much character/mood to your images. Mystic has hundreds of quotes, beautiful frames, and lovely filters. I'm addicted! :)