The floral image below is a photograph that was created by a multi-talented blogger. She is a professional photograper, desktop publisher, artist, sculptor, gardener, writer, event planner, party hostess, homemaker, loving wife, and a lover of all animals whether feathered, furred or scaled. She has other diverse talents, but in the interests of brevity I’ll settle for just these few.
The following image was posted on her blog. Click here to begin a wild ride through a kaleidoscope of images from a great number of our states, from countries ranging from Canada to the South Pole and from various countries in Europe. The text below the photo shows several comments made by visitors to the site. The first comment is by the blogger, and the third comment is my evaluation of the image.
What follows is a comment from the creator of the photo above. She is one of my three daughters, the middle one in years, the one that lives, loves, laughs and languishes in Northern Virginia. The comment that follows is in her response to Scott, a viewer who asked how she achieved the “glow” in the image.
Scott, this morning glory was blooming just outside my office window, below the fence line—and when the sun came through, it was a directed beam through the railings on the front porch—the glow caught my eye and I ran outside to catch it before the light changed! It helps that the background was dark (the shed and the woodpile), so that makes the glow pop even more. I guess the secret is to always pay attention and be ready to capture the light—ops like this are so fleeting. I’m just glad my camera was next to the computer, the battery wasn’t low, and there was actually a CF card in it.
Katie, another viewer, made this comment:
The middle of the flower looks like a female silhouette. Was that done on purpose? if not, amazing–if so, still amazing!
And (finally) my comment on the image follows. It is rather lengthy, but I was so smitten with the work that I felt that a pithy analysis was in order. I had to put the resemblance to the Mother and Child in its proper perspective, and that ain’t easy!
Just as an aside, the word pith got me into trouble with my eighth-grade English teacher, a buxom and pleasingly plump lady who wore short skirts and low-cut blouses and dresses, and she would often drop her chalk and bend over to retrieve it. Normally she would turn toward the class, but in one memorable instance she faced away from the class and bent over at the waist to pick up the chalk. I suppose that she wanted to avoid exposing even more of her buxomness than the low-cut blouse provided. In one instance that posture, that incredible vision, spurred me to acknowledge it with a whistle, and said whistle was then acknowledged by said teacher. She returned to an upright position, turned her blushing face to the students and demanded to know the culprit. The entire class turned around, pointed to me and in unison said “He did it!”
I’ll make that a separate posting soon, and I will include the incident involving the word pith—that’s not a threat, it’s a promise! But I digress, so on with this posting.
My comment on the image follows:
Katie is right on—there is definitely a female silhouette in the bloom. I can’t believe I missed it—thanks, Katie.
And I can see in the outline that the female is holding a child—great Scott, Cindy! You have captured the Madonna and Child—no, not that Madonna—the one that artists have portrayed over the centuries. Raphael is one of the most famous, but many have painted the Madonna and Child, The Holy Mother and Son, Mary and Jesus.
I can remember stories about images of Mary or Jesus or both being found in tree bark, in a toasted cheese sandwich, in a piece of toast, in an oil slick on the pavement, potato chips and Doritos, and there are probably many more that I missed. And all have drawn crowds of one size or another.
If the news of your Holy Vision in a picture of (whatever that is) gets out, especially to this part of the US and to our nearest neighbor to the south, the faithful will be beating a path to your door. They’ll leave all sorts of flowers, emblems, wreaths, burning candles and notes with wishes and prayers. You’ll have to hose them down just to get out to your car—the faithful, not the burning candles—although the candles could pose a problem for the local fire department.
And it’s possible—nay, probable, that some will bring sick and suffering friends or family members so they can be near such an apparition, in the hopes they will be comforted, perhaps healed.
I believe that you should submit this photo to your local papers, to one or more photography magazines, perhaps present it to some of your local theologians for inspection and comments. You need to protect your rights on this one—it may be a real winner.
And, of course, a closer look may lead one to believe that the image shows a woman holding one child aloft and pregnant with another. Hey, it could still be Mary—we have no way of knowing whether it is, or is not. After all, Joseph had been waiting on the sidelines for quite awhile before the Babe was born, probably with mounting impatience (no pun intended), and he must have been filled with joy that the Child, the first of their marriage, had arrived.
Most husbands, at least those with children, should be able to relate to the joy that Joseph felt—I know I did. My wife conceived and birthed three children, then committed herself to nurturing them. She projected her sweetness, honesty and joyful love of life into each of them, and bequeathed me three beautiful daughters, each a good person in every respect.
I was filled with joy at each birth and I remain filled with joy to be their father.
That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.