... with open eyes, and a generous heart, there is awe 'round many a corner ...
Thursday, 30 July 2009
A remarkable lightness of being
As the compellingly craggy Lloyd Rees drew to the end of his long life, his eyesight dimmed to a perception of light - and this is what he transferred to the canvas. There are some heart-stopping renditions of Sydney Harbour, September Sun being one. Chugging across the top of the harbour swell and through the wake of vessels gone before me, the sun and the salt combine to heighten my own perception of the light being absorbed around me.
Time is in neutral: mid-week journeymen have no need for hustle, no use for bustle. They have the patience to listen, to look, to watch and to think. Out on the deck, the breeze whistles around the collar as the shadows of the grey girders lengthen into the afternoon.
People watching is a guilty pleasure enjoyed by many at train stations and at ferry wharves. Pier 4 at Circular Quay is no exception. Woolwich service to the left: Milsons Point, McMahons Point, Birchgrove, Greenwich Point, Woolwich. Watson's Bay to the right: Garden Island, Darling Point, Double Bay, Rose Bay, Watsons Bay. We sit there absorbing the midday warmth, rocking gently with each rise and fall of the creaking wharf. We watch, smile, nod, acknowledge. A stir is caused by unattended baggage: a sign of that world out there that is not as far away as one would hope.
The massive Manly ferry departs for its 30 minute journey out to the Heads with a gradual turn to the left. The River Cat commences it hour long journey under the bridge and up the Parramatta River. Smaller vessels ply their busy trade: tugs, taxis, fire trucks, police. Larger vessels tote for trade: square riggers, floating hotels, trashy paddle steamers all ready themselves for the evening. Evening on the harbour is like black ink: the light has gone.