I have been feeling a pull to visit the wetlands lately (West Eugene Wetlands). Rain has been plentiful and the temperature mild. This time of year brings dense clouds and a blueish-gray pallor that feels like an enormous comforter has settled over the landscape. The life in the marsh is surprising and uplifting. Chevrons of geese (Canada and black brant) appear on the horizon as shivering, morphing DNA strands.
The wetlands stimulate me. When I go there I quickly gain a meditative, intuitive alertness that leads to satisfying video taping. They are living proof of the depth of simple moments, the intricacy of plainness. Carpeted in brown grass, flat and windswept, they are seemingly nothing more than a place to drain and develop; but, to stand in one spot and remain alert can be quite overwhelming. I don’t know what to tape first: the kiting kestrel, water-landing ducks, bayoneting herons, grazing nutria, oblivious joggers. I never have an agenda. I simply go and take what is offered to me. I always leave full but wanting more, wishing I could somehow capture the purple, brown, and ochre nuances of wintry evening light.