When is a robin not a robin? Well…


… when is a stone not a stone?


Colour is not random. The world is not built around metaphor.


There is an orange colour that is the sun here. We’re not talking about “sun” and “robins” and “grass” and “stone.” Just about one thing. You want to travel to the sun?

It’s here. Anything else is the language of people who are not here.

There’s a lot of talk these last few weeks about hereditary chiefs and their care for the land, and as important as that is, please don’t be fooled. Sometimes the land is a bird.

And again: not “land” and “bird” brought together in the mind, but land-bird, and, really, if you go there, land-bird-sun-you. It’s not someone else who is responsible here. What a challenge for people who are tasked with teaching metaphor at university and school. They’re really in a hard place, because the rules expand outward. It’s not just about a colour. The leaf I showed you in its stars of hoarfrost…

…is also the hoarfrost …

… which is also the catkin …

… and the robin in the tree.

And the haws, too (and following that red path, the porcupine).

This is not metaphor, and not poetry. This is how the world works. The branch …

… is bare below its fruit, but only because the trunk is full of hormones from the tree’s crown; if you cut the crown away, the tree grows at any point. It is always ready. It always branches out. So do all of us, but ours is not a hierarchal order or an order based on similarities. It is the mind, opening into itself — and that self is the world.

Now the porcupine and the ridge have opened into each other.

The pattern never ends. If you go against this pattern, you are going against this pattern. It’s quite simple, really.


It is also the story of mind, which is the subject of all these images. Call that awareness, if you like. Or minding — care.

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