Stories at the Park 5: inspired by Melusina Parkin

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About Melusina


“I don’t like so much talking about my photos. They are what they are,” Melusina says of her work. “Adding words to images is a risky matter: they drive the way observers look at images. Images can talk by
themselves, and observer makes they do that, according to his/her feelings.”

Given this, it is perhaps dangerous to put words around her images – but the fact is, they are quite extraordinary; the detail captured within them does indeed act as a springboard to our inner storyteller; I doubt any two of us will see the same detail, heard the same story, witness the same emotions as we look upon any one of her pictures. Each one speaks to us individually; sometimes the voice we here is constrained by the theme of an exhibition, other times it is unfettered by ideas and conceptions.

It is this richness of narrative, coupled with Melusina’s undoubted eye for detail, style and composition which draws me back and and again to her work.

Stories and Poems

Sand Mapping by Caledonia Skytower

Inspired by:  Landscapes 3

The ridges form and un-form in my hand,
little altered by my stretching.
Some say it is the landscape of a journey,
life writ close, for convenient reference.
Below the sand ripples and waves,
punctuating ridges of grass.
Is wind writing its epoch adventure,
exotic tales born from distant air?
Or the land molding itself to prediction,
warnings dispatched in changing lines?
Water will have its say in the drama,
diligently lapping its own legend.
And fire, though frequently distant,
plays its cameo in this planetary chronicling.
Forms wax and wane as nature flexes.
Whose story is mapped in the shifting sand?

“Landscapes 3”

Beach Scene by R. Crap Mariner

Inspired by Landscapes 3

George was a pirate, but he wasn’t a very good pirate.

He preferred the feel of sand between his toes to the wet wooden deck of the ship.

So, when the shop docked at port, he hauled sand from the beach to the ship and spread it all over the deck.

The extra weight slowed the ship down, and it took longer to catch up to cargo vessels that they wanted to raid.

“Fine by me,” said George, laying in a chaise lounger on the deck and sipping an umbrella drink. “More time for me to work on my tan.”

Beach Scene II by R. Crap Mariner

Inspired by: Landscapes 3

George was a pirate, but he wasn’t a very good pirate.

He didn’t get along with the ship’s crew.

He thought them to be violent and uncultured, while they considered him a worthless bookworm.

George admitted that he liked books, but he didn’t think he was worthless.

After all, he’d learned a lot from all the books he’d read.

For instance, he learned that good fences make good neighbours from Robert Frost’s poetry.

So, he build a fence around his bunk.

Unfortunately, the only building material was the wood from the ship.

“George, why are we sinking?” asked the captain.

The Last Journey by Trolley Trollop

Inspired by:  Landscapes 9

“Landscapes 9”

So this is where you came from. The map says “Mud Lake.” But there is no mud. There is no lake. There is only flat, endless ground empty but for a huddle of tall trees that jut from a low rock ledge worn smooth by winds that once danced and played through time and place.

Instead of grass, dust as fine as the silken talcum powder you used to smooth your skin puffs beneath my feet.

Nose in the air like a scent hound I hunt life amidst implacable stillness.  An hour passes. Nothing.

Where shall I leave your ashes?

Untitled by R. Crap Mariner

Inspired by: Landscapes 6

“Landscapes 6”

George was a pirate, but he wasn’t a very good pirate.

For some reason, he’d taken to going everywhere on horseback.

Which was fine when the ship was in port.

Although the owner of The Five Skulls Tavern didn’t take too kindly to the horse crapping all over his floor.

It was when the ship was out to sea that things got difficult.

Horses need a lot of hay and water, and there’s only so much room on a ship.

One morning, George woke up, and the horse was gone.

But, instead of hardtack and gravy, supper was roasted steaks.

George and the Cat by R. Crap Mariner

Inspired by: Landscapes 8

“Landscapes 8”

George was a pirate, but he wasn’t a very good pirate.

He spent most of his day sitting in a deck chair, petting the ship’s cat while looking out at the ocean.

The ship’s cat was supposed to catch and eat the mice and rats in the hold, but it preferred to lay in George’s lap and sleep.

Every now and then, George would swab the deck.

The cat would curl up in George’s deck chair and nap.

After George finished swabbing the deck, George would pick up the cat, sit in his chair, and pet the cat some more.

Marine Layer by Caledonia Skytower

Inspired by: Landscapes 11

“Landscapes 11”

“It can’t be October already” she wraps herself tighter in her blanket.

Squeezing her eyes shut against the morning glow she rebels against the many thoughts that tumble after: switching tank tops for sweaters, mulching the garden, having the furnace serviced.

So profound is her denial that pleasant thoughts of autumn are not allowed consideration: harvest, apple cider, Oktoberfest, Halloween.

Magically the light illuminating the curtains shifts from silver to gold.  Sensing the change, she sniffs experimentally.

“Hang on!  It still smells like July!”  Eyes snap open, eagerly awake to the sunlit window.  “This will burn off in no time.”

Untitled by R. Crap Mariner

Inspired by Landscapes 12

“Landscapes 12”

George was a pirate, but he wasn’t a very good pirate.

His most recent personnel review had branded him a coward, so George set out to prove his valor and bravery.

He volunteered to take the morning shift at the wheel, and when he saw a light through the fog, he called for all cannon to be loaded, full sail, and he steered to close the distance.

“FIRE! FIRE!” shouted George, and the crew launched a full volley…

At the Charleston Lighthouse.

His next review branded him an idiot.

“But at least I’m no longer a coward!” beamed George happily.


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