to see beauty, to be shaken

It’s very cold right now and there’s light snow over everything. I love to see what’s familiar in a new way. A small tree, the flank of a hill, even the curve of our driveway as it leads away from the house. To walk out the front door and see the door into the workshop at the other end of the narrow deck is to see beauty, to be shaken into a new apprehension of form and function:


I never approach this window with the idea of seeing through the workshop to the other side. But yesterday I did. These old single-paned windows — the one in the door, the little arched one over John’s work bench — describe the frost perfectly.

As with all my work, whether it’s a leaf on a rock or ice on a rock, I’m trying to get beneath the surface appearance of things. Working the surface of a stone is an attempt to understand the internal energy of the stone. – Andy Goldsworthy

2 thoughts on “to see beauty, to be shaken”

  1. I must admit that I miss the snowy winters of Canada. Right now, here in Paris, it’s oppressively gray, gray, gray. A perfect day to stay indoors, drink hot chocolate, and read (or listen to uplifting classical music.) As for your above images, I retain a childhood winter image of a perfect icicle hanging off the roof of a log cabin in Ontario. It was huge and translucent, a work of nature’s art, sparkling and glittering in the sun. There were other, smaller, icicles that we broke off with our mittened hands and crunched in our teeth. It’s funny the things we remember.

    1. It’s beautiful here this morning, Juliet, with new snow overnight. We have a concert to try to get to this afternoon but morning will be spent by the fire, with coffee, and maybe a book. We don’t get icicles on our house because it’s insulated but I remember them from childhood — the shape of them, and the taste!

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