Morning Meditation: "She Came Late"

"To contemplate is to use your ability to see directly, intimately, and to express through the creative process and your life what you see---not what you think you see, but what actually is (Daido Loori, 2005 p80).

 ©Photograph & haiku by Shelita Birchett Benash, 2014.

©Photograph & haiku by Shelita Birchett Benash, 2014.

Pairing photographs that I take with haiku and tanka poems that I write became a practice I began almost 5 years ago. Pairing photographs with haiku has become my digital version of haiga, which is Japanese Zen Art haiku paired with calligraphy and paintings. Haiga are known to be humble observations of everyday life.

For me, the practice of writing daily haiku, along with taking daily nature photographs is rooted in gratitude.  It's a way of  being; of seeing God everywhere. The use of photography is how I work on stopping and slowing down. The objective is to be in the moment. Everything stops. Nothing else matters, but my breath and steady hand. Stillness. And what comes from that moment of stillness is captured in gratitude. These moments of my life. These haiku and photographs become contemplations, celebrations in my day.