It was a day in July. I don’t recall the year but I clearly remember the first time I had a run in with the Preacher. I was to meet another who was running late when this tall smiling man with a shock of beautiful white hair approached. Spotting me he turned and before I knew what I was thinking I blurted out: “I am waiting for some one. Perhaps it is you?” Neither of us knew as he sat down just the same.
We spoke of photography and dogs, of the beauty of the leaves on the trees, of Native American spirit guides and how in art, as in life, cow one is not cow two. Turns out he was the one I had gone to that curb side cafe to meet, I just didn’t know it then. Like life itself it seems we only see it after its occured.
Preacher man and I have been photographing for close to eighty years between us. We are both good and we do totally different things and sometimes achieve a nearly identical effect. He is Canon and I am Nikon so he paints images moving the camera with slow shutter speeds while I play around with multiple exposures and such. We are both artists, both throwback hippie wanna be’s, guys who like to sit around in the shade on a lazy afternoon, talk about stuff that seems to matter (at the time we are talking about it) and slowly open our heart’s to each other and share our sacred experiences.
I should say that the Preacher is not a man of the cloth. He is a man of Cottonwoods, of Flickers, of dogs and cats and Dragonflies. Most of all he is my friend and since that day our minds first playfully jumped from auto-auto-eroticism to the phenomenolgy of perception darting briefely or not into interesting side alleys of speculation, I have felt a deep life long commitment to him and to sitting on the river bank as often and for as long as we both can. I appreciate his kindness his thoughtfulness and gentle heart. I am grateful for all the Preacher has helped me see and he has this knack to cut right through the bullshit and mindless “mine” stories I sometimes get caught up in too! And he has that rarity of gifts being able to embrace humility, honesty, and humor, laughing outloud when I catch him lost in one of his “stories of the way it was/is.” In this way we take turns nailing each other to life. Of course we are our brother’s keepers!