There is a phoenix on the road to eternity. And in the balmy morning of quiet, as the road bends and turns as it is wont to do, the phoenix takes flight and the moment breaks as the air crescendoes with possibility and the sky looks down on the rising flight and sighs.
It is a morning among mornings. One week ago, I walked amongst the photographs at an exquisite exhibit of father and daughter, of perspective upon perspective, of faces amid brightly colored cloth and on the opposite wall, moments in objects frozen. Photographs by Steven and Julia Tapper, at the Janice Charach Epstein Gallery in the West Bloomfield, Mich., Jewish Community Center. Work of the heart, art of the day.
I have a picture like the one that starts the father’s side of photographs – his hand juxtaposed underneath his daughter’s baby hand; mine is my baby boy’s tender fingers resting on my open palm. I know exactly why we stop to photograph that symmetry, to remember the perfect flow of early life and of love like a river, reassuring in its cool splash.
Like the Tappers’ photographs, I make a life out of celebrating the mundane. Singularity in being ordinary. Steven’s “Onions” portrait, his perfect “Palm.” Julia’s: “not wanting to miss a moment of opportunity…the seeker’s curiosity is powerful.”
I have found that being surrounded by the authenticity of life on the edge of what is possible … provides the canvas for the most powerful innovation and opportunity.
That phoenix. Rising on the wind. Cresting over treetops so full with summer they have nothing more to say. The word authentic bandied about like a tennis ball, still believing in itself. Something hidden, a secret master – powerful forces of change are at work always, and what is achieved is a profound secret held close like whispers to the moon.
It is Sunday morning and all is quiet. Hemingway has gone to bed. A candle flickers, music plays. I am proud to know people who yearn to make a difference in the community around us.
As you rush along on your trodden path, consider taking a half-hour out to view this exhibit. It is exquisite in its simplicity and the fact that a community icon like Steven Tapper and his beautiful daughter Julia are willing to put their hidden talents out there for all to see is a gift we should accept without question.
And hear the message: that there is more than meets the eye in every circumstance; that the people we think we know, we only know a portion of; that there is beauty in the mundane, and meaning; that every moment is worth celebrating, and every fixture can be art if you look at it the right way.