Leaving Bass Harbor early Saturday morning in clear, cool air and the brightness of sun that eluded us all week helped lighten my somewhat saddened heart. I love this part of Maine and have romanced her in these writings. It was not so much leaving for I know I will return, but the shadow of the “stuff of life” waiting for me at home that weighed on my heart.
The brilliant sun and dazzling, deep blue waters so clear that they reflected the sky and every single thing in close proximity, prevailed throughout the day as I drove south through Maine’s small coastal towns: Bucksport, Searsport, Belfast, Camden, Damariscotta (where I consumed a giant cup of freshly roasted and ground Sumatra coffee plus one of their world-famous sticky buns just out of the oven… oh my), Wiscasset and more, until I reached Kennebunkport. I settled into the motel I stayed at two weeks ago and knew I was really, really tired. Every bone ached and I barely made it to dinner, where I almost fell asleep at the table. My camera never left its bag all day. I watched a movie, “The Green Mile”, and was reminded how Stephen King can be a very fine, elegant writer and, then, fell fast asleep. It was eight o’clock.
I was up early to pack and drive to Ocean Shore Drive, which is where the very wealthy live, the waves pummel the ragged shore line, and one sees the sun rise and set. I was there for the sunrise and I knew no one else would be around that early EXCEPT for an artist with his easel painting with great deliberation and fervor. He had a bumper sticker on the back of his struck, which said Artist for rent or sale. I loved it but didn’t disturb him as I carved out my own space much different from the view he was working on.
The sunrise, of course, was the first image. Sunrises and sunsets are irresistible to artists. That’s why we all do them. Why? They are miracles of nature, no two are alike, and they reach our souls like well-intentioned magic wands to heal and soothe.
There was a house on the hill with Maine’s classic rugged coast line at its feet overlooking the seemingly boundless ocean. I had never noticed it in all the years I passed through Kennebunkport. This morning, it looked haunted yet beautiful in the first glimmer of morning light.
Grasses, limbs, twigs captivate me. They are are simple, unique, and are the ethos, the very bones, of nature. This was my last photograph in Maine.
I said my goodbyes to the waitresses at ALL DAY BREAKFAST where I ate when I drove through Kennebunkport two weeks ago. I drove home making only one stop. Walking into one’s home after several weeks away, neglected yet familiar, stirred many emotions, not the least of which was a mild feeling of panic at all the unpacking I had to do, the gathering of food, the making of it … these simple things felt overwhelming for a few moments. But I summoned my will and strength to do what needed to be done. I heard the furnace pop on even though the thermostat was set at 55 degrees. So, I started loading wood in the house to build a fire in the wood stove, which comforted me as it warmed the house. The fire was a homecoming and I was finally able to renew “old conversations” as I investigated the corners, the shadows, the warmth, the light of my home.
Thank you all for being there as my witnesses to this recent adventure. As always, when I write these chronicles, I feel each of you standing with me. This is a blessing and I say this with the deepest gratitude in my heart.