summer-dahlia by Jon Armstrong.

Summer Dahlia?

The LDS church goes to great lengths to make Temple Square beautiful all year. I’ve walked through and paid attention this past winter, spring and summer. The plantings are crazy. I don’t know if this is a Summer Dahlia. So let me know what I’m looking at besides crazy reds/purples and yellows/oranges.

I’m really pleased with how this one turned out. These flowers are so vibrant as to look fake. I didn’t do much work on this, save some exposure adjustment and a hint of saturation. The photo still doesn’t quite capture the beauty of these flowers.

* * *

I’ve been listening, on mega-maxi repeat, to this song by Passion Pit:

Freaky video:

The drums are wicked and nearly seizure inducing. And the intro drums are the perfect emotional underscore to this summer. The crazy vocal chipmunk samples thrown in bring back beautiful and bittersweet memories of the summer of 2001, cranking Third Eye Foundation’s “What Is It With You”:

You’ll have to get almost to the end (around 3:19) before the drums turn buzzy and the vocal samples threaten to push you into a nervous breakdown. It’s worth it.

“I’ll Be Alright” has a weirdly hopeful melody and chord progression. The lyrics are not so happy on first listen, but I think that’s the point; lemonade can be made at some point, should lemonade be desired. Still, I love the contradiction of super catchy chorus (using a Baba O’Riley-ish progression in the chorus; V-IV-I??) and bridge with sad lyrics. I’ve had a hard time with letting this song go. I’m likely going to listen to this one until I can’t stand it and can never listen again. It’s working for me on a lot of levels for now, so I’m going with it.

I suppose the above image of a beautiful flower is also misleading; my emotional state isn’t super awesome fun time happy. When you have all the facts, sometimes that can be brutally painful. It can also enable big change. And that’s the hopeful part for me. I’m not out of the woods, but even recognizing that fact in the real light that knowledge of one’s personal truth, eyes wide open, is beginning to transform me. I welcome it, no matter what.

* * *

Affirmation: Let the pain transform you. All the way.

  • Alexandra

    Those are zinnias.

  • Lisa Folb

    I think that is more likely a zinnia…

    Thanks for sharing the photos, music, and a bit of you.

  • Colleen Proudlove

    Glad to see you’re enjoying the new Passion Pit, pretty great choice to
    play non-stop. I’m always surprised I am still able to enjoy Manners
    since I have listened to it an embarrassing number of times over the
    past few years and I am sure Gossamer will fall into the same category

  • Laura Burkehart

    Yep, zinnias. I grow them and have them tattooed on my back. Lovely shot!

  • Kristan

    Dahlia or zinnia — I know nothing about flowers except which ones I think are pretty, and that one is gorgeous, at least as you’ve rendered it here.

    Btw, your last paragraph (and your introspective attitude in general) remind me of a book I just finished and absolutely adored: TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS by Cheryl Strayed. I think you would enjoy it. And if you don’t feel like buying the book, you can read most of the columns that are collected in it here:

  • blurb

    Zinnias! I didn’t think to search for zinnias. Thanks!