Bittersweet, The Series

I can’t seem to stop thinking about yesterday’s bittersweet.  The vine is simply too beautiful without–and I know this sounds odd–but beautiful without consequences.

You might say, quite rightly, “Um, er…Pat, it’s a plant for God’s sake, a plant isn’t supposed to have consequences.”

To which I say, “I see dead people.”

I find the conversation comes right to a brisk stop on this note and I am allowed to babble on without…well, without consequence–unless you count alarmed darting eye glances, which I,  of course, notice but ignore.

The human experience of “bittersweet” is infused with loss, sweetness and a brushstroke of fear and this image taken yesterday at the once crowded town beach a half mile from my house comes close to showing my experience of bittersweet rather than me-babblins’.   (I love to try and correctly punctuate non-existent words)

I’d also like to read or see your thoughts on bittersweet if you’d care to join in.  It’s a series, of course– on-going, serendipitous and generously without rules.

Let me know if you post something.

I promise not to talk about dead people anymore.

©Pat Coakley 2009

PHOTOGRAPHS CANNOT BE USED WITHOUT WRITTEN PERMISSION

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12 comments on “Bittersweet, The Series”

  1. Dead people are a wonderful and poetic thing to talk about…look at literature, at Ophelia or Greek Tragedy…
    …if it was only for me: go on with talking about dead people.
    The feeling it gives you – bittersweet – makes you feel very much alive.

    What a sky it is hanging above your little lake there … stunning…

    I would love to hear, what for you defines the difference between bittersweet and melancholic.
    For me, bittersweet is something that comes with all senses… vision, sound, touch, taste.
    Whilst melancholic is more a …metaphysical state? … emotion only?

    Curious on your thoughts.

    • Oh, Sanne, I love your thoughts on this subject! You are right…there is a dense sensory experience with bittersweet to me that IS more alive than melancholy…I wouldn’t have expressed it this way without hearing your words, but it really is the difference between life and death…melancholy being all about loss not life it seems to me. So, interesting to think about this with your creative young mind!

  2. Bittersweet is how I describe that state of being overwhelmed by beauty and sadness at the same time, equally.

    • Vesper de vil…okay your name alone belongs in a novel! I love your description of being equally overwhelmed by beauty and sadness…I think it’s true and if I now look at this posted photo I would say that it tends to over accentuate the sadness part, don’t you think? Thanks for your thoughts!

  3. P.S. I am also avenatura. :)

  4. When I see your pictures of the Ponds/Lakes/bodies of water.. I can’t help but think of my grandmother. She lived on a Pond in Waltham. Today’s topic… I see dead people… reminded me of her, her pond, and how much I miss her. She was an amazing human being.

  5. oh but you still have to answer if they call ha ha. the thing about bittersweet, that it is beautiful but many find it an evasive weedshrub (i just avoid punctuating whenever possible) but i think thats a camouflage for the association(s) of changes and the one that changes from summer in particular into the orange reds yellows of october, there is a sense of fair weather fleeing and time passing. yet they are so colorful and prolific and critters can eat the berries too

  6. If Ken Seguin sees this do you think he sees dead people also??? Talk about bittersweet….. more bitter for sure.

  7. The artists of the renaissance realised that they needed a little light and shade (chiaroscuro) in their drawings to make their work look more 3D. Along that line of thought, I’d suggest that we need a little bitterness to go along with the sweetness to help us appreciate it. If there was no evil, there would be no good.

  8. So if the bittersweet vine is “beautiful without consequences” is that the moral hazard of the bittersweet? (sorry, I couldn’t resist.)
    This is a lovely photograph with the two children running, and contains a bit of the bittersweet, but not out of balance. And for me balance is the key; after you’ve tasted bittersweet, which flavor lingers the longest, the bitter or the sweet? I hope it is a bit of the sweet, like the beauty of the vine that lingers in memory.

  9. To go along the line of Donald Diddams,
    I find the sweetness lasts in memories … and the bitterness just visits in sleepless nights when one wanders the corners of their mind.


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