Monday, August 4, 2014


The way my thoughts flow these days, literally anything could be metaphor.  Bridges are easy ones.  Bridges get you over obstacles - real or metaphorical.  There are bridges that give teeth to the toothless and bridges that save music from being tame and repetitive.

We travel by bridges to safety, but we also travel by bridges to the new and unfamiliar.  I saw a counselor recently to work through my concerns about life transitions.  I came away determined to exercise daily, make lists, get things done, try new recreation, and stick with my employment for now but not let it be a drag on my spirit.  These things are like a bridge - to get me safely over stuff - to take me somewhere good and safe, but as yet unknown.

These are paintings of the Colorado Bridge in Pasadena, a spectacular old graceful curving span that the paintings barely hint at.  It is also known as suicide bridge, for the obvious sad reason.

Metaphors make me think of symbols, and symbols make me think of film class.  I took a film class in college, and recall the wonderful movies I possibly wouldn't have watched otherwise.  I think my taste for good films was timely nurtured.  I remember lectures and discussions of visual devices.  My recollection about symbolism, however, was not from my own film class, but an earlier film class that a friend of mine had taken and told me about.

The way I remember it, my friend told me about Ingmar Bergman films, and how there are children  that aren't so much individuals but are a manifestation of a younger self who is trying to show you something.  He said children like that showed up in dreams as well as film, and that film had borrowed from dream theory.  The other thing I remember is that when the wind picked up in a movie, it meant that change was coming.  So all these years since, whenever the wind starts to blow, I look knowingly at the sky, and say in my best wise-old-farmer voice, " Change is coming."   Of course, wind is wind, and life isn't art, at least not all the time.  But the thing I've figured out is that whether or not the wind blows or whatever the music does, change is coming.  Armed with that bit of truth, I'm a fortune teller.