Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Daily Miracle

"One of the pleasant things those of us who write or paint do is to have the daily miracle. It does come."
--Gertrude Stein

I'm not sure I can accurately convey how profoundly significantly and accurate the above quotation seems to me. As you'll know if you've read any of the poems on this site, I'm a great believer in trying to tune in and capture/appreciate/marvel at the wondrous minutia of the quotidian day. But Stein is saying something even greater--not just that you should be on the lookout for the daily miracle (and perhaps, as I like to think, that miracle is something very basic and simple and normal from the day that suddenly elevates itself into something astonishing, or perhaps for her it was something else entirely--no way of knowing for sure, but in truth it hardly matters), but that "it does come." It does. Not it can, or it might, or even it will come. And when it comes, what it is? Is it dramatic? Is it earth shattering? No, it's pleasant. God, I love this so much.

So here are a couple of folks that, to my view, have done a very good job of capturing the Daily Miracle in online form--

I really am rather bereft that you can no longer access the online archive of A Year of Mornings (where two friends each took a photo each morning and created diptychs sight unseen--one of the major inspirations behind the project I do with my dad, Silas and Eppie). But you can see these lovely images in book form (full disclosure: the book was published by Princeton Architectural Press, sister company to my own employer).

And Jill Wignall makes postcard drawings of her Daily Miracles over at Today I Saw. Love these. Just love them. She used to make one every day and mail it--sometimes to a friend, sometimes to a stranger--and then she stopped for a while. But I'm happy to note she's back at it recently.

Image source for Gertrude Stein photo is here.

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