Formal beauty, light and death, 13 Sept

‘My art has no object, no image, no point of focus. Generally, we use light to illuminate other things. I like the thingness, the materiality of light itself.’ James Turrell. (Since the 1960s, he has made art from light, though is best known for the massive Roden Crater, ‘a gateway to the contemplation of light, time and landscape.’)

As a photographer I use objects. These dead jellies are beautiful.

The jellies are drenched in light,
a wilderness of misty weather,
congealed, bits of beastie,
some display a maroon resonance.

On such a breadth of sand, the attenuated
sea closes quickly with no ocean scent
and when the water fetches them back
it’s hard to observe much difference.


A woman slowly jogging is mobbed
by a seagull, others join in. The mob
then backs away, leave it to the author.
She waves one hand, as if saying

goodbye without looking back.
We usually leave each other alone
and should, unless predator or prey.
Police operations derange the sea.

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