words and art by w a l t e r w s m i t h

As We Grow Older Details Become Memories

A mother's smile, a mother's joy

Do you at times find yourself transported back in time when
a certain inherent detail of your life presents itself and reminds you of
something or someone? Do you recognize that moment as a significant junction
between remembrance and the here and now?

A father's necktie, the way he dressed

The other day while driving and listening to some beautiful
introspective music by the New Age composer Cleveland Wehle, I found myself
visualizing small details of my life. The name of his CD is Relax Deeply – The
Music, and the inspiring track that prompted me to compose this post is
entitled Anne’s Pleasure. What I visualized while listening were small
fragments or details that were components of a larger picture. Those images symbolized
in part the relationship I have had with time and memory—my life, my time here
on planet earth, my memories.

A photograph, a loving memory, a mother's wedding

Details become memories….
It seems that as we grow older, our lives manifest a
deeper sense of reflection. It is at times … like the feeling of Déjà vu, when
something ignites our connection to the past. The smallest detail infuses
itself into our mindset.  We feel and
remember things hard to describe in words, but intuitively understand their

Remembering a daughter's beauty throughout the years

A daughter's beauty throughout the years

One of the objectives of my work as an artist has been to
bridge the past with the present.  In
this post, I take small visual details of the past, and present them as memory
fragments. Those fragments reflect my relationship with my mother, father,
daughter, sister and family.

A sister's handwriting, so distinct

There are a host of details from our past, about our lives, just
waiting to present themselves unexpectedly—changing the way we remember.  We all share in our own unique way this
experience. Let’s look back and celebrate.

A memory of my family's elegance, so timely

http://youtu.be/IKMDy_elBK8  –  Cleveland Wehle – Song for Mary Clare – Video by David Flood

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It
is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a
stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good
as dead: his eyes are closed. … Albert Einstein

What do you think? What small details that surround your
life bring back memories of beautiful times gone by?


8 responses

  1. Jody

    I loved this series, and the beautiful memories that you describe really reflect that sensitive, soulful person that you are! I like the way you fogged some of the photos to imply (to me, anyway) the hazy way memories come up…and then, some images were very sharp (again, the way way some memories come up). And mentioning the music that helped take you to this place, I am again amazed at your vast range of artists and pieces that you can describe. However, my friend, I worry about you DRIVING while listening to music that puts you in an altered state, lol! take care!

    July 31, 2011 at 10:33 am

  2. Thanks Jody, I am always amazed at your ability to understand in what direction my art is goiing, its influences and the feeling behind it. You are the best critic a friend can have. You are up early I know and preparing for a day performing at church. Music is our lives indeed.

    Peace and Light

    July 31, 2011 at 10:53 am

  3. This is a beautiful post Walter. I have tears in my eyes. I take a lot of photographs and I look through them all the time. While I look and afterward I contemplate my friends and family. I am amazed by how the little ones have grown and how more and more beautiful they become. I see love and pain in the lines around the eyes of the aging.

    August 1, 2011 at 2:28 am

    • Thanks BaxterBunny, this was a special post for me. Family means a lot to me.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:50 am

  4. I was thinking the same thing about your driving around in that state! A few things remind of my grandparents, corn, because they had a huge garden and I lived with them a lot so I ate a lot of corn. I love it. The smell is so sweet. I just realized that two of my favorite colors are yellow and green. Just like corn. I have two of my grandmother’s ceramic pieces in my kitchen in the same spot that she kept them in her kitchen. My bible certainly reminds me of my grandmother. She read it everyday. Told how Jesus was my friend. I really couldn’t make much sense of it when I was young but the images have sure stuck with me. Now I understand that he is a friend indeed.

    August 1, 2011 at 2:48 pm

    • Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the details of memories that surround your upbringing. I too have some lovely moments spent with both my grandmothers. They contributed so much to my life.

      August 3, 2011 at 4:48 am

  5. Beautiful… I do have these deja vu, wistful moments and like you, I am transported to a time when hope was ripe with endless promises and life seemed simpler… those were the days. 😉

    August 3, 2011 at 10:25 am

  6. Deja vu moments are what helps to make life so wonderful.

    Trust in the Mystery….

    August 4, 2011 at 8:46 pm

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