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An aging humanist hanging on to the idea that there is hope for humankind — against all current indications.
Photo by Perfecto Capucine on Unsplash

A quick sample via Medium’s new Lists

Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susan) ©2021 Ronald C. Flores-Gunkle

Sparkling in the sunlight

These stars of earth, these golden flowers.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

OK, I admit it, I may be slightly obsessive-compulsive. After a week of photographing 50 flowers and fruit and sharing the photos online, I still wasn’t happy. My consciousness was raised — especially by the beauty of weeds and wildflowers — and, also, I felt that I neglected some flowers in garden beds. Macros dazzle, but I decided to back off just a little to show my blossoms in their element.

Half a year later

What promise? I promised not to fill your mailbox with my missives. Promesa cumplida: this is just the second newsletter this year. The truth is although the fog of Covid-19 seems to be lifting, the fog around my Florilegium publication seems stationary. I considered simply shutting it down. Then I re-read the stories and realized how cruel that would be. As long as there is an orphan deserving a home and someone to keep the door open (me), I decided Florilegium will (modestly) flourish!

So what’s in the rooms? The most recent arrival is Capturing a Cliché, a rather ruminating…

In the sunset of my life

Patillas, Puerto Rico ©R.C. Flores-Gunkle

My Geriatric Journal #21

Golden sunsets for my golden years? Dear journal, let me pour on the clichés today. Sunset photos are a dime a dozen (see?). Virtually everyone with a camera (in my day) or the ubiquitous camera phone (today) will aim it at a sizzling sun and its dazzling scattering of light sooner or later — mostly sooner. I know this as a former editor of a destination magazine — my optic nerves may have been permanently damaged from looking at sunshots. I have nothing against spectacular sunsets. …

Quarryville, PA. Photo ©Ronald C. Flores-Gunkle

You can take the boy out of the country but…

You probably know the rest: “… you can’t take the country out of the boy.” (Forgive the sexist noun, but I am that boy.) I decamped Pennsylvania more than sixty years ago and since then I have mostly lived on the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico. I am bilingual in English and Spanish, bicultural by education, love my Puerto Rican wife and Puerto Rican family and I am Pennsylvania Dutch. Does that mean I have rejected my Pennsyvania Dutch heritage?

Impossible. But first, let’s get the Dutch thing out of the way. I am descended from early 18th century immigrants…

Antigonon leptopus • Bellisima Coral (and a busy bee)

Wonders in the grass

Please forgive my whimsical title. It is the best I can do after an exhausting photo shoot. It was supposed to be Day 5 of stalking fruit and flowers on my property in Puerto Rico. My final challenge was to get as close as possible to the smallest flowers I could find and capture them with a 90mm macro lens on my Sony SLT-A55 digital camera. However, with reshoots (I’ll explain) and research (I got compulsively involved in nomenclature), it took a lot more than a day.

All photos ©2021 R. C. Flores-Gunkle, Commercial rights reserved

Banana Flower ©2021 R. C. Flores-Gunkle

Day 4 of my photo challenge

It was not difficult for me to create 10 photos of things that are edible (my goal for Day 4) to share on Snapshots. I only wish I could share with you some of the effusive over-production of our tropical fruit trees. What can one family do with 50 pounds of ripe bananas?

All photos ©2021 R. C. Flores-Gunkle, All commercial rights reserved

Rose-Apple Blossom ©2021 R.C. Flores-Gunkle

Day 3 of my personal photography challenge

Well, I managed to complete three days. I hope I can hold your attention with more photos of flowers. I have expanded my hunting ground to include the area from my house to my front gate — a downhill journey about a football field in length. Sporadic bursts of afternoon sunlight were mostly filtered through clouds. It was a flat light for photography but fine for moderate closeups. I dusted off my Sony RX100, the wonderful little camera I usually travel with — when it was still possible and safe to travel. …

Torch Ginger ©2021 Ronald C. Flores-Gunkle

Day 2 of a personal challenge

I have genuinely enjoyed viewing the various photo-a-day and other series by fellow contributors to Snapshots, but have — until now — resisted the urge to join in. I have offered many collections from my library (archived HERE) but have avoided the commitment of taking a new photo every day and posting it. I hate to fail, and I am not sure I can find subjects that would interest others. I rarely go beyond the gates of my property, so my options — and (models)are limited.

There is the other issue too: should an 80-year-old-slightly sight-impaired-person troll for photos on…

Ronald C. Flores-Gunkle

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