Tag Archives: photography

we create to celebrate

full moon over Yellowstone shot by Ron DeKett in 2015
full moon over Yellowstone shot by Ron DeKett in 2015

Dear MooingAround family,

This New Year’s Eve I second-guessed myself about writing to you. I immediately thought, “Why should I write something? Who cares what I think on New Year’s Eve or any time? Isn’t it egotistical to think I have something to say?”

But is this the plight of all creative people—writers, parents, painters, farmers, caregivers, musicians, business folk—all of us here together on this small planet? We are insignificant and our work is insignificant, but at the same time, we are important and our work is important. It’s one of the great paradoxes. We liken individuals to grains of sand on the shore, yet each of us is unique and together we can build magnificent beaches—resting places for the soul and peaceful spots for storms of emotion, even fear and doubt that batter our sands, and also love and joy and hope that burn in our hearts.

Did you see the full moon on Christmas night? My husband, Ron DeKett, and I saw it rising orange and magnificent over the pine trees at our daughter’s subdivision in southwestern Michigan when we were going out to our car after a day of feasting and present-opening. We knocked on their living room window to invite our daughter, Jennifer, and five-year-old grandson, Eli, to come out and see the moon. The next time a full moon graces Christmas night, Eli will be age twenty-five. It was splendid when I first noticed it, but became even more beautiful when Ron’s eyes fell upon it, and we shared it with our family, just as he is sharing this spectacular shot of a full moon gleaming upon Yellowstone on his trip there last October.

Creative pursuits are like that—splendid when we are going about them alone, and when we share them, they become all the more meaningful.

May you all enjoy a blessed new year.




a secret to good writing

four ducks in a row by Ron DeKett
four ducks in a row by Ron DeKett

If you want to be inspired on a daily basis, marry a photographer, or at least hang out with one. You’ll get lots of practice truly observing what’s in front of you (and behind you and all around you). Because that’s what photographers do. And hanging out with a photographer provides plenty of time for contemplation (while they are sliding down into a bog to shoot a lovely little green snake and you are sitting on a footbridge, or they are setting up a tripod to shoot Joe Pye Weed and then waiting, waiting, waiting for a lull in the breeze so the photo will be in focus, or they are standing by Lake Placid at Greenville’s beautiful Paris Mountain State Park while you count the ducks). I hope you enjoy Ron DeKett’s photo of a yellow swallowtail and my poem, born of contemplating time, “Dance of the Swallowtails.” Please register on our site if you haven’t already and comment—when do you find contemplation time? Happy writing!

dance of the swallowtails

yellow swallowtail by Ron DeKett
yellow swallowtail by Ron DeKett

for Ron

August 26, 2012

 You stand on Lake Placid’s shore
viewfinder framing
clear water revealing
fish just hanging out,
four ducks sailing into what was nothing like
a South Carolina August afternoon
because the sun kisses gentle
while breeze lays ripples on wet
like your fingers ruffling my hair at night
when we’re falling asleep;
viewfinder framing
swallowtails—yellow wings flirting with currents,
they dance
to a sound I am sure
…Nan Lundeen


poetry in the park

Middle Tyger Library, Lyman, SC, by Ron DeKett
Middle Tyger Library, Lyman, SC, by Ron DeKett
Here are the promised poems created by extraordinary ordinary people during the Poetry in the Park class I led in July at the Middle Tyger Library in Lyman, SC. Participant Marjorie Garrett wrote after the class, “I was quite impressed with what each person managed to write in such a short time.” I agree, Marjorie! After I told my husband, Ron DeKett, about the poems, he photographed some scenes in the park, which I’ve included with the poems. Click on the link after each poet’s name to read wonderful, spur-of-the-moment creations. Marjorie Garrett, “Whitewater by the Mill,” M.M. Griffin, “River Watching,” Mary Ellen Lives, “The Sign Says,” K.G. McAbee, “Dam,” and Chris Thackston, “Odd Number.” Please register with MooingAround.com at the top of the home page and comment, if you like. We promise not to share your email addresses. Thank you to all who already have registered. You are helping us build a creative community.

the sign says

by mary ellen lives

Musing in the Park by Ron DeKett
Musing in the Park by Ron DeKett
Playing in or around
The river
Is strongly
It is not forbidden
It is not illegal
You will not be punished
The sign is not my mother
Spreading guilt
Like overflowing water
Brown with silt
It is not my father
A boulder
Beneath the white water
The sign is calm
The sign is quiet
And only



by k.g. mcabee

River in the Park by Ron DeKett
River in the Park by Ron DeKett
Back in the day
The mills dammed the rivers,
Damning them to stone cages,
Funneling their freedom
Into bolts of cotton and linen and denim.
Now we free the rivers
From their rocky chains.
But are they happier?
Or do they miss
Their occupation, clothing the world,
Hiding its nakedness
Under the colors of the stars:
Red giant, blue dwarf, black hole?


river watching

by m.m. griffin

Boulders in the Park by Ron DeKett
Boulders in the Park by Ron DeKett
I hear cackles from earlier generations
and echoes of past conversations
in the water’s thucks and bubbles.
The voices are wet branches against the sky.
I see images of vaguely familiar faces
and distant places in the foamy water
crashing over rocks and swirling
in the river’s spiral.
I want to wade in the shallow water
and revel in the current’s resistance,
but there is not enough time.
I watch a man toss his rod into brown water.
After three attempts, he catches a small fish.
I try to remember something unseen
and wonder how far the river flows.
I want to stay and play for a while,
but I must go.


whitewater by the mill

by marjorie garrett

Rock in the Park by Ron DeKett
Rock in the Park by Ron DeKett
That would be a fierce hydraulic
if you took it in a kayak.
I wouldn’t recommend it.
If you do, your judgment’s slack.
You will end up on a gurney
with a spine board on your back.
It will be a lonesome journey
to the rehab place and back.

summer solstice tree

Solstice Tree by Ron DeKett
Solstice Tree
Photo by Ron DeKett

Summer Solstice Tree

Saluda, North Carolina

by: Nan Lundeen

On Summer Solstice
this Blue Ridge
the tumbling
turns white
over Pearson’s Falls,
turns dark
wending between

rolls under

past turtles
orange jewelweed
plantain leaf sedge
hydrangea white and wild
scent of mint

skirts sand
bobcat prints
black bear

his jazz tune
ever improv

a block
of mossy rock
set in by a childlike
one day.

itself above the fray
a tiny tree
the middle of the block

in such a precarious
in the now
having chosen