Picture Poems
By Joan Alice Maria Gibson, Esquire ©2002

On Saturday, 30 March 2002, Tyger Gilbert took Monroe and me to Rock Springs, Arizona [a total of 6 inhabitants -- wonder whether they are from the same family?!] for the 'Pigs in Heat Celebration'.

On the way up, I asked Tyger about his art studies. He told me that some students said they would not be good artists for they could not draw a straight line. The teacher told them that there were only three straight lines in nature and that they did not need to be able to draw a straight line. Tyger then asked me to name the three. I could not guess the first one [ray of light from the setting sun over the horizon] as that was outside of my experience due to my poor eyesight.

Photo by Joan Alice Maria Gibson, Esquire
Photo by Joan Alice Maria Gibson, Esquire ©2002

The second one I guessed as a plumb line. Tyger said that that was man made and not in nature. I asked him, what about a spider hanging on its thread about to make a web or about to latch onto someone? Tyger said I just contributed to the field of art.

The third one, having the appearance of being straight but in actuality being curved, I guessed correctly as the horizon.

The fourth one I could not guess. I asked him for a hint. Tyger said to think of geology. Of course, I guessed that one as a crystal.

Once there we spent hours sitting at a mountain, taking photos in varying light as the sun went from very late afternoon to dusk to dark. I was using my StickCam with highest resolution of 352x288 and only RAM memory powered by its dry cells. I was afraid the pictures would not survive as often the batteries drain in an hour or so; and there go the pictures into oblivion. Then we went on to the Celebration, eating, drinking, and enjoying ourselves.

Late that night, Tyger drove Monroe and me back home. Immediately I launched our computer and cabled the StickCam to the USB port, fearing that the pictures would not be there. But, miracle of miracles, there they were, all eighty-four of them. I uploaded them, saved them into albums, zoomed into some of them and, lo & behold -- for the 1st time in my life, I saw not only a ray of light, but a whole bunch of them, fanning out from the horizon over the mountain to the foreground. I found that sight miraculous, which gave rise to what I call picture poems.

The first one is of the rays of light. The second is of Monroe's front end taken against the mountain. Since I am dyslexic and have been teased about it, this gives rise to the second 'picture poem'.

Photo by Joan Alice Maria Gibson, Esquire
Photo by Joan Alice Maria Gibson, Esquire ©2002

The reason I am doing this is because I just found out from the retinal specialist that the vision is just about 'shot' in my right eye. I have an Adies Tonic Pupil, right eye, and am using Pilocarpine 1% to constrict the pupil so the intense, bright, painful light does not bother me so much. He also told me that I have rod & cone degeneration and retinal pigment epithelial degeneration with macular atrophy; suspecting probable Stargardt's retinal dystrophy over Best's Vitilliform retinal dystrophy. I have finger counting at one foot in my left eye and the left is the only one I am using for my graphics. The retinal specialist told me that my left eye is 'going to follow suit'. What a 'bummer'! Although this does depress me, I decided that as long as I can still use my left eye, I will go on a’aimin' & a'shootin' & a'uploadin' photos into my computer -- to see what I have never before in my life seen -- and to go out 'with a bang'.

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