Emeralds That Live

Emerald Dragonfly

I never understood the fascination with jewelry or other adornments. A spectacular diamond or emerald or gold or whatever piece, can capture the imagination with its beauty and novelty, but for me personally, I find jewelry and makeup tend to obscure the more natural, powerful physical beauty of a person. Tattoos are somewhat similar, although I give an edge to their permanence and personal nature — unlike a necklace or ring, once a tattoo hangs on a person, even though it may be imitated, the original can never be transferred. I’m no extremist or absolutist, however, and recognize that there is an art in all the aforementioned mediums. And who doesn’t like a shiny, colorful, striking form? There is an inherent artfulness in it. But if I’m going for jewels, I much prefer the living ones, like the compound eyes of the emerald dragonfly pictured above. Sitting on the fairly drab black, clubbed abdomen and hairy brown thorax, those eyes reflect the light like two impossibly green spaces as if they were painted onto our very own eyes, or maybe somehow, reality itself. We can’t really wear them, but they are out there to appreciate and hopefully to enrich our lives. And if you can’t get out as much as you would like, don’t worry — I’ll keep capturing reminders like digital jewels or virtual tattoos.

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