Saturday, June 06, 2009

cap in hand...

There is a mystery too deep for words;
the silence of the dead comes nearer to it,
being wisest in the end. What word shall
hold the sorrow sitting at the heart of things.
The majesty and patience of the truth.
Silence will serve; it is an older tongue:
The empty room, the moonlight on the wall.
Speak for the unreturning traveller.
-john hall wheelock

For a handful of years in the nineties l worked with people
who needed assistance. The first job was in a woodworking
day program. I loved that job. A group of men, a pile of tools,
we made picnic tables, doll houses, and little wooden nicknacks
that have probably ended up inthrift stores.
My favorite person
was Bob, Bob couldn'tspeak but knew a few signs. One of them
was "fish",which we all practiced because he could sort of say the
word. The sign was wiggling your hand back and forth,like a
snake, or like a belly dancer on her side.Then l worked in the
semi independant living program,these guys lived on their own
and l was there to offer assistance with, well you know, life skills.

I liked kevin, he was funny and he seemed to enjoy my company.
My boss always seemed more concerned about kevin's hygene, and
whether or not his dishes were done, but l kind of felt it more
important to go fishing. We would drive up the old northwest
bay logging road, a secret little lake that made you feel holy. We
would cast off of shore, worms and bobbins, catching fist size trout.
Keving was stubborn, when they discovered that he had diabetes,
well it was very rough on him. FIfty years of drinking soda pop and
licking dairy's cone and suddenly your suppose to eat like a bunny, it
was tough. A couple years later, riding his bike on a beautiful sunny
day, Kevin suffered a heart attack and died.

Lori was tough, strong and would always help you if you needed.
He liked to collect things, lots of things, bikes, cars, radio's, tv's, any
thing you could take apart, he was like the guy from "back to the
future". Lori had an unkemptness to him that was appealing. One
year l offered him a shed in my yard, "a place to store a few things",
It didn't take long...he filled it to the roof, he circled the shed with
broken cars, and late at night, when even the owls close their eyes, l
would sometimes hear loud voices. I thought maybe Orson Welles was
right and it was the war of the worlds but no it was just Lori and his
coat hanger wrapped cracklin radio.

I also worked with the beautiful Hugh and have written
about him before, here...

I just want to feel "right as rain"

"Of course compassion condones suffering
in that it recognizes,
yes, suffering is life."
-j campbell

fern and gary...


"Sexual intimacy begins with acknowledgment of and respect for
the mystery and madness of the others sexuality, for it is only
in mystery and madness that soul is revealed."

Brenda and Alan...
Like two different flowers, on two different seasons, one open, one closed.

Alan is fast, quick, they use to call him "speedy". He had spent
some time at Tranquille before they closed down, and like any big
institution, it probably left a imprint. Brenda was softer, slower,
steadier perhaps, they made a good pair.

I photographed their wedding...

I took Alan and Brenda everywhere, camping, hotels in the
big city, art shows, walkabouts... I don't know what l was trying
to do, l guess l thought it was useful, important, real.

This next image got me into a lot of trouble... you can whip me or love me, l've battled it in my head,
but there is no right, no wrong.
Brenda and Alan trusted me, they invited me in, l wanted to
acknowledge this, to acknowledge their intimacy, their love...


a little extra time, check markmaker India Flint




Pierre Raby said...

...I'm much compassion revealing deep beauty in every man or woman encountered along the road...

Manon Doyle said...

Hi Ken,
OK... I have to admit I had to come back to this post three times before I could even leave a comment. Your images and your work is as Wheelock says, " too deep for words". I read your stories and see the photos and feel that you're taking us into the souls of these people. Your work conveys so much raw emotion.

kenflett said...

Thank you Pierre for such a lovely comment.

kenflett said...

Manon, thank you, it's a pleasure to read your comment.

Aleksa said...

What a fortune and beauty you spread all over the universe and this blog world,Ken Flett, I cant remember meeting lovelyer soul on my path.I went again to your web site to silently injoy in your work of art.I hope you will not get ever in trouble because of your hart of gold.Have a good evening.... Aleksandra

Caio Fernandes said...

where do you find so much pacience for to revel all these beaut of every single thing and moviment .... and then work even more on it ?
oh yeah!.... and the texts are realy good too , but i am very visual , so i look all the images 10 times before to start to read.
it's all ( perfect? )as sould be , i guess .

kenflett said...

Sandra, so nice when you visit my blog, thank you. no heart of gold, maybe copper and tar.

Fernandes, thanks for coming back, l enjoy your writing, kindof like tom waits or pablo neruda, smoking a cigar and spitting on the ground. :)

Renee said...

My dearest Ken. You are holy.

I visited your wife and saw Jonah the other day. Your wife has a beautiful heart and your son is amazing and reaching for stars.

My dearest Ken, again, you are holy.

I am always so thrown off guard by what you have done and what you say.

I am always so thrown off guard about what I see in myself and how I am not a good person.

You see all people. I try to, but I don't. I want to, but they scare me.

Some of the pictures of the people and how they look dirty and let's face it, either crazy or poor or both scares me.

I want to think I am a better person, a person who values all people, and I am. But then I'm not. I am that I feel compassion and try to smile or give money, but then I'm not because they scare me. I'm not beause I think of them as different from me.

I don't even know what the hell I am trying to say except that when I read what you write and when I get to see through your eyes I want to do better.

Love Renee xoxo

kenflett said...

Renee, we all know your a good person, read your blog, the love you have for your family can't be beat.
i just read a quote the other day, jung, saying something about without our darkness we are not complete. your scared, well your gonna be scared:) i'm scared of other people, rich businessmen scare me.
i'm not holy, but l do feel complete sometimes.
thanks so much for your words Renee, l sure enjoyed reading them.
take care

cornel said...

you have a great kind of art...awesome way to explore the souls and the spirit...I feel the power of the images deep under my skin

Renee said...

Thank you Ken. I knew that you would understand me. I also knew that you would never judge me.

When you say 'the love you have for your family can't be beat.' Yes that is true, but anyone can do that. I think everyone does do that.

It is the love you have for all people that comes pouring out of you.

As far as rich businessmen go -- they couldn't lick your shoes.

And Ken maybe the use of the word holy was wrong. But man, you are the most evolved (I like that word better) person I have had the pleasure to know.

Love Renee xoxo

kenflett said...

Renee, this comment conversation were having is becoming longer than my posts :) but you certainly make me feel good.
however, you wrong, the love for a family, not everyone can do it, no, it's tough, alot of people out there who didn't get what you gave, the people your scared of even. :)
but..thank you Renee, your very nice to me and l appreciate it.

Málaga said...

A beautiful post, Ken. Really a story that arrives to ours hearts, and great images. Congratulations and thanks for your work!

kenflett said...

Málaga , thanks so much for your visit, and comment.

aristide said...

expressive shots

kenflett said...

Thank you artistide :)

CathM said...

Ken, your compassion is your passion... such inspirational words and images of ‘life and the heartbeat of the earth... humanity’, truly moving...

kenflett said...

Cath, so nice that you took the time to visit, what with your busy teaching and all, thank you so much.

Renee said...

Shout out Ken.

Love Renee xoxoxo

kenflett said...

ya renee l'll make sure my next post is very loud. :)

Renee said...

Ken when I look at your pictures, which I do so often that I think you would be surprised. I always realize how much further I have to go in the ways of love.

Is it because I am afraid of these people that they kind of make me feel sick.

I honour your love for your friends here so much Ken. And then I can't get past that they look so dirty and crazy.

I know, I'm a piece of shit (this is just a statement, nothing needs to be said here).

Ken you left a comment on my blog 'tear something apart with your passion renee, sad and passionate, your cards read.' I have no passion and I don't think I ever have. You were right about my cards.

Thank you and notice I think you are my psychologist as I am in tears.

Love to you Ken and your beautiful family.

Love Renee xoxoxo

Renee said...

I almost forgot.

Happy Father's Day Ken.


kenflett said...

Renee :) your on too much medication, comeon, there's enough passion in you to light up winnipeg.
Thank you so much for your passionate comments.
your a fighter.

onesilentwinter said...

i am blown away, those words seem harsh in comparision to what i have just experienced while visiting your blog. sometimes i feel like my eyes have developed a foggy film then you stumble upon a blog that helps you see cleary again.

thank you.

kenflett said...

Thanks for your visit, onesilentwinter,
Your blog is beautiful and soulful and has the same clearful cleansing.:)

Momo Luna said...

Hello Ken,
i found your blog thru the url of Caio and i'm glad he showed me the way to your world. An intense, beautiful world that touches the soul. Why did the photo in this post causing you trouble? I think it is a very beautiful, compassionate photograph. As all your work is.....

Sweet greetz from Holland, Momo Luna

kenflett said...

Momo, thank you so much for your visit.

Jo Archer said...

Hi Ken, just stumbled across your blog and so glad I did. Beautiful images, beautiful words! (Why did that last image get you into trouble?)

kenflett said...

Jo Archer, thanks for coming by, and for leaving your comment.
In trouble, well it's a long story. :)