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1 February - 31 May 2004

Dedicated to my number one nephew, Dr. Christopher T.J. Spier

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Reflections on a Pond

"Try to walk as much as you can and keep your love of nature, for that is the true way to learn to understand art more and more."

     Vincent van Gogh, to his brother Theo, 1874

    While on a ramble over our small farm on Mason Neck in Virginia, I was attracted by the sight of a tree branch protruding from what little water remained in the bottom of our pond during the severe drought of 2002. From my vantage point, the twigs of the branch and their reflection on the water created a striking figure which seemed to have a life of its own. For lack of a better term, I called it a hydroglyph.

Hydroglyph #12, Mason Neck, Virginia.
2002  Charles Albert Huckins

    So fascinating to me was this graphic figure that I began to visit it frequently over the course of its life. Eventually decay and the rising waters of the pond (after the drought eased) brought the hydroglyph to an end, but not before I had an opportunity to enjoy, and record for your enjoyment, its brief, quasi-illusory existence.

    This exhibit presents several of the many manifestations of this rather enigmatic hydroglyph, shaped by the changing light and weather on this small speck of Earth over three seasons of one year.

Another unexpected by-product of this experience has been an outpouring from my mind of dozens of poetic fragments. The first such fragment, which follows below, was a direct result of my frequent visits to this little pond during this period.

Not wishing to fish with line or hook,
I cast a net with my eye.

Instead of fish,
I snag ebb and flow, seasons,
even life's illusions.

How does the water,
so pliant in this little pond,
move me so?

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