One Thousand Points of Light

One Thousand Points of Light is an experiment in textured, familiar, impermanent stories of the senses. These stories create a tapestry of thousands of experiences that shares ephemeral beauty with those around me, reminding us all of the light we carry.

The goal is to get to 1,000 of these. Here's where I'm at, newest on top. Last updated on 2017-11-05

Seventy
August, 2013
Black Rock City, NV
The pillars of the Samarkand temple floating among the stars between the Reasonable, the Confused, and some fresh-squeezed radio static
July, 2002
Sanger, Texas
The thin, shrill tenor of your pitch pipe as you direct a new choir at a new church through the only three songs you know in their hymnal in a church that used to be a barn
October, 1998
Euless, Texas
The pezioelectric chirp of the speaker in your pocket calculator when it finally plays Taschenrechner for you after hours of Reverse Polish Lisp
August, 2003
San Diego, California
The smell of your first and last fish burrito from a restaurant in San Diego because you had enough gas to get to the next cell tower down the road
May, 1995
San Antonio, Texas
The third time you visited the Alamo as a child, and yes we do remember it, and do instinctually respond with clap clap clap clap Deep In The Heart Of Texas, and yes I can draw you a map of this place from smell and memory
July, 2017
Mansfield, Texas
The Beastie Boys track that was playing in your friend's mostly working car when his fireworks accidentally lit an abandoned airfield on fire shortly before the fire department was called from a payphone and a duffel bag of fireworks gets wetted and unceremoniously deposited in an unassuming church dumpster
August, 2004
North Richland Hills, Texas
The brown corduroy pants that became your DnD dice bag and patches on the elbows of the green corduroy jacket you wore every day for four years
September, 2010
Waco, Texas
The indifferent clatter of the tin-roofed gas station that sheltered us after the Wilco show in Austin as a tornado passed within feet and jack-knifed a truck across the street and we ate hot dogs with hot mustard because we were hungry and hot dogs don't decide whether you survive a tornado
October, 2013
Seattle, WA
The desert party warehouse party afterparty in an old converted bus station in Seattle where twelve people remembered your name, most of whom dressed as forest critters dancing more or less freely
May, 1988
Austin, Texas
The cracked green vinyl of the long seat on the short bus on the way to take a bunch of tests to get onto the shorter seats on the longer busses
Sixty
December, 1994
Euless, Texas
The pure white stream of milk coming from the cold, black garbage bag you moved to see a bug that scurried underneath it when it snowed and froze in Euless and you were free to explore that new building down the road with no cars out
Memorial Day weekend, 2016
Crater Lake, Oregon
The taco chasing a luchador through an open field, glowstick-yellow spiders sunbathing on the rock where the Willamette begins because that's not the kind of ball we play in this field
Winter Solstice, 2013
Portland, Oregon
The small paper boat carrying a prime number, a small candle, and a weary prayer from the bank of the Willamette towards the new morning
Winter, 2002
Augusta, Maine
The sticky mass of coins you found in the console and gently pick apart at a toll booth in Maine because you spilled coffee in the coin holder again some time ago and forgot this is a road you have to pay to drive on
Winter Solstice, 2013
Portland, Oregon
The small paper boat carrying a prime number, a small candle, and a weary prayer from the bank of the Willamette towards the new morning
Finals week, December, 2008
Arlington, Texas
The moment you wake up, sixteen seconds before sunrise on the roof of the University of Texas linguisics building with some paper, a pencil, a can of corn, a tattered corduroy jacket, a cane fashioned out of an old bedpost, and five dollars to your name
August, 2003
Bedford, Texas
The pleats in your slacks and the cut of your polo shirt as you sit and listen to why you're fired for being gay, before you were even gay, because for whatever reason that is still legal in Texas
August, 2003
Nashville, Tennessee
The sculptures, hot to the touch, and the bus full of tourists assembling to witness the gathering of a tribe at the foot of a redneck reconstruction of an ancient Pagan monument to witness what is most likely a legally recognized ceremony, joining one man and one woman in the bonds of marriage
September, 2003
Nashville, Tennessee
The smell of the muddied carpet below your friend's desk as you wake up from a nap after driving all night once you're informed that you've been selected to participate in a formal academic study of people who see sound and hear light
October, 2003
Euless, TX
The trail of blood leading from the kitchen to the bedroom as you find your father unconscious and convince him to get into the car to go get an MRI after a fall, a choice that saved his life just in time for him to disown yours for being gay.
Fifty
August 2009
Dallas, Texas
The warmly welcome Bismillah of the minaret beneath which you and your fiancee and her Turkish friend gathered to learn Arabic since she grew up in a country where women aren't welcome in mosques and here with with hijabs more openly explore what it means to be free
June, 2013
Portland, Oregon
The impossibly orange sunset over the roof of the skyscraper downtown that your security guard friend let you and your father explore where you tried to tell him what happened and why you went quiet for so long but he couldn't hear you over the warm wind and the mountains in the distance and the traffic down below
July, 2004
New York City, New York
The harmony between two voices the warm and humid night that you and your friend were asked to give her roommate and his new girlfriend some space to themselves at a highrise apartment of brutalist design in Gramercy when you and she instead headed to a park beside her favorite Greek diner to sing opera to each other, realize you know some of the same pieces, hold hands, and spark
July, 2004
New York City, New York
The knowing stares of friends and strangers as you pass through subway terminals and crosswalks wielding an eight-foot transparent plastic rod as a cane because it's getting hard to walk again and sometimes the rod helps you merge into traffic more effectively also
October 15th, 2016
Seattle, Washington
The satisfying clakka clakka clakka of closing twenty browser tabs when you finally figure out how to fix that one thing that's broken, the tests pass and the fix holds and you can now stand up, stretch, eat, or sleep again
November 17th, 2013
Seattle, Washington
The drift of steam rising up through the manhole cover during a cool night on First Hill as you drive a cargo van containing your turtle and all of your possessions to a new home
Summer, 1987
Austin, Texas
The energetic warmth of your uncle's hand as he shows you how to hold your small and open hand flat up to his, as close as you can get without touching
April 8th, 2007
Jerusalem, Israel
The prayers for peace hastily scrawled, carefully wrapped, blessed, and pressed into the wall on Passover Sunday
October 6th, 2011
Occupy, Portland, Oregon
The smell of cup noodles and urine and marijuana and hope when a protest becomes a homeless camp abuzz with the flash of reporters, the hiss of radios, and chant of tribe
August 2nd, 2014
Yakima, Washington
The expanse of meteors and rolling hills and silent radio antennas and broken-down vehicles in the scablands, shrub steppe wailing in the desert wind
Forty
March 7th, 2016
Haleakalā National Park, Maui, Hawaii
The disoriented moment you cross above the cloud line, driving up the side of an active volcano in the middle of the pacific watching for cattle
October 28, 2001
Atchafalaya Basin Bridge, Louisiana
The unexplainable airborn event on Highway 10 between Beuamont and New Orleans involving electrical malfunctions, possible time dilation, and unconventional propulsion
August 17, 2001
Sparta, South Carolina
The warm, damp, rhythmic swell of nighttime tribal dancing and chanting in the tunnel in the key of G beneath an overpass of the Blue Ridge
June 29th, 2014
Klamath Falls, Washington
The third place you've pulled over in the past mile before you hike to a spot that offers privacy, lay out a quilt, and start digging around for condoms
August 12th, 2016
Issaquah, Washington
The crowds of people laying down, speaking six languages to each other, watching for meteors and mosquitos with hot chocolate and warmer company
November, 2003
Berne, Switzerland
The anticipation before sneaking into your girlfriend's Latin lectures to distill German from twin comprehensions of Latin and persistence
April 17th, 2006
Haifa, Israel
The warm, humid salt water smell of the Mediterranean from a concrete balcony partially destroyed by cluster bombs not one month prior
March 3rd, 2016
Hana, Maui, Hawaii
The feldspar-enriched sands where the mountain meets the sea where you perch for one hour with a camera and a notebook searching for turtles and for meaning
August, 1999
Anahuac, Chihuahua, Mexico
The pervasive smell of bleach and corn and jalapeños and the laughter of children wafting through the dining hall at noon at La Casa de la Esperanza
August, 1993
Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico
The sangha of reptiles greeting the warm jungle afternoon outside a temple to long-forgotten calendars and gods and their games of stones
Thirty
August, 1990
Etoile, Texas
The cracked, off-white paint on the crooked screen door, humid brass floor vents, and gilded red lighting at your gramma's place by the lake where tomatoes grew in back yard toilets
January, 1999
Venice, Italy
The swarm of pigeons coming for the bag of birdseed your sister just bought as protestors cried out for environmental protection
December 29th, 2000
Frankfurt, Germany
The very kind man who offered you a ride from Idstein back to the airport in Frankfurt with stories of SALT inspections and Ukrainian wanderings
December 10th, 2002
Wertzville Rd, Enola, Pennsylvania
The minister and his wife who gave you a ham and mustard sandwich and a bed at his parsonage when your car got stuck in a ditch during a blizzard a mile outside of Hershey
August, 2003
Nashville, Tennessee
The smell of coolant and smoke and excited green apparitions of hallucinatory sleep deprivation below your friend's desk in the cognitive neuropsychology building at Vanderbilt
3:17pm, September 5th, 2016
Lakeside, California
The moment when you really need to pee, then you pee, then you touch ephemeral enlightenment in the overwhelming absence of desire
February 10th, 2010
Arlington, Texas
The juniper smoke that filled and cleansed your overpopulated apartment as an itinerant Buddhist monk chanted in syntactically precise Tibetan
Summer, 1988
Galveston, Texas
The intermittent, violent fwoosh of natural gas towers punctuating your evening walk along the beach of decaying fish and balls of tar
1991
Hurst, Texas
The scratchy blue and black wool of the garment you're allergic to as you walk down the runway against your will or better judgment, "beauty and the brain" uninententionally intentionally pitted against each other, gradually losing hope that brains win in a beauty pageant of entirely children reliving their parents glory days for them
Summer, 1989
Etoile, Texas
The swarm of flies around the dock just outside Nacogdoches where you caught your first and last fish and were sad for the fish and you were thirsty, too
Twenty
July 5th, 2002
Columbus, Ohio
The picket fence just off High street you were leaning against when you first held hands with a girl you liked who you flirted with in Ancient Greek
August, 1992
Euless, Texas
The brown shag carpet and wood paneling in the living room of your childhood friend who was the first to show you a lava lamp and rock music
7:00pm, August 27th, 2015
Black Rock City, Nevada
The plaintive beep of your very overloaded inverter as it tells you and everyone in earshot that it's also also hot and dusty and hungry and lonely and broken
October 9, 2002
Boneville, Utah
The twinkle of the salt flats at sunrise, driving all night and day and night again through roadside rest stop tumbleweed and heavily caffeinated microsleep through the wilds of a very enchanted circle
August, 1992
Hurst, Texas
The dark brown acrylic floor mats in your father's car as he scrambled through The Sex Talk in the car on the way to church in metaphors you'd only come to contextualize and understand sixteen years later
9:07pm, June 17th, 2016
Salish Sea: 48.739301, -122.907952
The pantone 17-1462X sunset between Orcas and Sucia Islands with a boat full of speakers, wet wood, tired hippies, and tireless communications antennas, stopped by the coasties who hesitate to board a boat while being filmed
November, 2014
Capitol Hill, Seattle
The smell of mold and the squeak of whiteboards in the condemned house where you entrusted your turtle and your heart to a cabal of scientists and mathematicians
October, 2016
Under a bridge in Seattle's warehouse district
The fire-spinning pump of loudspeakers as ravers dance and musicians play for passing train conductors who stop and hit their horns in time to the beat
Summer, 2003
Clovis, New Mexico
The all-night drive to an enchanted space under a new moon where you turned off your headlights by the side of the road and couldn't tell whether your CD player was broken or whether it was just Bjork
Summer, 2004
Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport
The mix of loud chuckles and hushed outrage in the crowd as you welcomed your friend from Tel Aviv with signs reading "lesbians", "monkeys", and "soy" in large, friendly letters
Ten
December 21, 2001
Hofhelm, Germany
The billowing cloud of clutch dust as you figured out how to drive a stick during a snow storm on Autobahn 3 and promptly got lost in the mountains
1986
Austin, Texas
The glow of the lifelike bluish purple entities roaming around the house at night for a full two decades before you knew that synaesthesia is genetic and you're not actually all that crazy or posessed
November 2, 2011
Occupy, Portland, Oregon
The proud grin an artist gives her wheatpaste when walking by on an autumn afternoon in Portland; What do we do when we can't be together? Waiting for something to happen
October, 2010
Denton, Texas
The violent hum adrift from your lovingly macguyvered amplifiers before your last indie rock garage band show in Denton, a girl's nightmare flashlight party held together with old tape and regaining dignity on the Tokyo subway
August, 2007
Bedford, Texas
The friendly, glowing green elves who helped you learn Erlang that one time when your doctor mis-calibrated your insomnia meds
June 19th, 2016
Orcas Island, Washington
The Earth Church mountains from which your tribe invented a new poetry written in colors that don't yet exist
October, 2010, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon
The hazy drive through night and day and tumbleweeds and night again until the first sight of a whole mountain with trees on the mountain when coming down the Columbia River gorge with a car full of all of your material belongings and a gleam of hope
December 2010, Portland, OR
The holy visions of purple cloud respiration and burnt orange pulse dancing around sensory deprivation tank number five reinforcing panpsychism and the network of tribal divinities
Columbus Day Weekend, Portland, OR
The smell of home cooking and the congress of fifty introverts over creaking planks, tequila in a candlestick holder, lesbians, monkeys, and soy soy soy in the hope that some day--some glorious day, you will remember which light switch does what in the Saluthaus bathroom
February 18th, 2017, Twelfth and Pine, Seattle
The glint of sunset off of skyscrapers, off downtown, off the sound, off the space needle and the Olympics, resting on pillows sharing new vinyl with your sweetie at the end of a day of building Ikea furniture and unpacking timeless traumas
Zero