Wednesday, April 24, 2013


As many others, I watched the horror that was this years Boston Marathon. I live in Florida but I've spent most of my life in Massachusetts. I walked Boylston Street many times over the years. I walked beside people of all ages, colors, sexes and political parties. Like many great cities in the world, Boston is a mixture of all people: some friendly, some not so friendly, some generous, some not so generous, straight, gay, business men/women and students, athletes and the not so athletic,  Republicans, Democrats and some independents. But independent might be the one word to describe most Bostonians.  I could have been on my way to a movie, a great restaurant or at a few times, to photograph the marathon. I have walked Boylston Street before.

It was like so many others that I watched the news with a mixture of sadness, anger and bewilderment. Like many, I was looking for  a reasonable explanation of an insane act. I am sure we will hear reasons spoken, even the very words of the younger of these two deliverers of evil, death and hate. The sad part is they will not be new reasons. Whatever the words, the message is always hate. I have walked Boylston Street before.

I am a photographer and my eye is trained to see beauty. In the lands of this planet, it's fauna, animals and humans. I look and find beauty, I cannot and will not waste time looking for ugliness. That does not mean I do not see it, I see it. I have walked Boylston Street before! 

The ones that either overtly or without thought propagate these feelings of hate and distrust throughout the years are killing this planet and I'm not speaking ecologically. Hate in the name of religion or national pride is not new. It can be traced back thousands of years. But just like all crimes against people, it is just as disgusting and vile now as it has always been. I have lived through years of great men being killed for the same reasons and not just in this country. I have seen the hate of Munich and Mississippi of the 50s and 60s.!!! I have lived through years of mass graves and mass hate. I have walked Boylston Sreet before.

I could not help but hear John Lennon's words this week from his great song 'Imagine'.

"Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us 
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today.

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life as one."

I love those words. I find great value in the message John was delivering. Yet he, too was taken from the world by a madmen's bullet.

I visited Manhattan with my wife during the week after 9-11. We, like everyone, had seen the destruction that hate brought to the world on that day. A week later standing at Broadway and Liberty in Manhattan, I saw men and women of all colors and races with tears streaming down their faces. I have walked Boylston Street before and I am growing weary of the walk.

As I said, I am a photographer and find beauty in all the faces of all people. Let me share some today. Look at these faces, see the beauty in them all! Can you hate these people you do not know?  I know there are those of you that can and will. We need to all pray/hope that they change or that more people in the world do not and could not ever feel that hate. We need to change. There is danger from so many places and when people feel scared, they react out of fear and usually, many innocent people die.

 " You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.
    I hope some day you'll join us and the world will be as one.
    I hope some day you'll join us
   And the world will live as one."

Make no mistake, if this does not change, our planet will die as one.

           We have all walked Boylston Street for too long!!!


Hostel Tinktinkie - Santa Rosa de Calamuchita said...

A wonderful post Jim! You have walked the street before and yet you are not blaming. You still see the beauty in the people around you. May the people of Boston find peace and may the people responsible for this evil find a way to live with themselves.

Jan Neel said...

Such perfect words, I love "Imagine" it has been a favorite of mine since it was released. The things people do to each other on large scale and small are horrifying. Generally in the name of self really. Like you I see the ugly, just chose not to focus on it. this is a beautiful post, I love the people photos.
You capture all the beauty you see with such passion.

PORTIA said...

Dear Jim,

All I can do is hug you and shed some silent tears for what harm we human beings are doing to this beautiful planet by indulging in hatred for each other, cruelty to poor animals and cutting down the lofty trees in thousands. Yes, I am a dreamer like you and we people suffer the most for having such sersitive minds.

Ron said...

Jim - This was a very thoughtful and poignant post. It is an observation with an open ended question...why is there still such anger and intolerance? Why can we not take a deeper look at ourselves and focus on the beauty? Thank you for the post!

Galen Pearl said...

I love that John Lennon song and have quoted it myself. Wonderful photos!

Martha J. M. Orlando said...

Your touching reflection and beautiful photos brought tears to my eyes, Jim. And, the only thing which can end the hate is learning to love each other as Christ loved us.
Blessings to you, my friend.


It's hard to imagine that any one of these beautiful people above could have been a victim themselves that day...God forbid. I have a long lost relatives in Boston, I don't know there whereabout now but I pray their safety...anyway I pray that these senseless act of violence would come to an end. So we don't have to Imagine like J. Lennon do.
These lovely photos must remind us all that life is precious No matter what colors we have. Thanks Sir Jim for reminding that beauty in each one of us.

melissa said...

I have seen some of the pictures you have shared here before.

My heart goes out to Boston and to the victims of the bombing... the thing is, we prepare and yet we really do not know when and where things like this will strike.

I love what you wrote about 'seeing' beauty ~ with that time is never wasted.

Thank you for sharing your images and your sentiments with us.

Lots of love and prayers ~ always!

Anonymous said...

Great collection of examples of the human palette.