Cherokee Kid

Jim Alberty is a member of the Bird Clan of the Cherokee Tribe of Oklahoma. Born in Claremore, OK he now lives in Maine, working as a composer, writer and Creative for Apple. He is active in the Casco Bay area arts and education communities as a composer, musician, social dancer and actor.

Sunset and the Bridge


Related Facebook album is here.


Hard to believe the contrast time can cause.

This morning I'm at the Nonesuch Golf Course in Scarbourough. As a Board member of the Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine I need to support as many activities as I can, especially as I don't tread in the exalted financial levels that other people do.

So on this bright Monday morning I'm taking photographs, haring around in a golf cart documenting people having fun for a very good cause.

Saturday night I was on foot, wandering around the Western Promenade of Portland. I'd gotten off work late in the afternoon, stunned that I had to take yet another test to qualify for training at the Mothership in Cupertino, CA. I was pretty sure I'd already passed it two years earlier but we couldn't find the scores so taking it again was my plan B. (I went ahead and took it Sunday - passed, 90% - whew)

Melancholy feelings and the beauty of a sunset on a bright clear day both resonate at the same low note. This prompted me to get out of my chair and head out with my camera.

Both of Portland's Promenades - West and East - are vestiges of the old sea captain days of the city - much like my old neighborhood in Tulsa was on the edge of the "old oil money" section. The houses are old and evocative of long past ages, different economies and sociologies.

The Sun sets behind the White Mountains, on this particular day you could see Mt. Washington, some 60 miles away. Somewhere in all of that was the Arethutstra Falls, which I'd hiked a few weeks ago.

The light was golden but fleeting. The Fore River estuary spread out below me, the Jetport on the other side, rail tracks, the new Mercy-On-The-Fore hospital complex, the county jail.

Far below, to the right, was the new Veteran's Bridge, the back door to Portland. The old bridge was being disassembled, its green-steel skeleton stripped of concrete roadway, was a ghostly sight as day ended.

It was a quick drive down the Prom, a parking space in the old Stephens Point traffic stop and then I was out in the dwindling light, a tripod and camera back both in tow.

Photographing the new bridge has been in my mind's eye for a while. It's a very simple, modern span. A pedestrian/bike path, well lit with overhead cantilevered lights, runs along the side; the rails are low, you have a great view of the water as you drive over.

The late Summer - well, early Autumn, to be honest - air was becoming brisk. I'd brought a long-sleeved t-shirt to layer on but still wound up wishing I'd brought a jacket. Cars drove by, no one honked. Even with so much traffic I felt oddly, comfortably alone.

Intricacies of mastering a new camera - in this case a Nikon D-70, a gracious gift from my dear friend C - can take your mind off physical discomforts - at least for a while.  Lying down on the concrete to get the angle of a jet flying over can put your mind back on it.

Autumn is definitely arriving, Summer is leaving. The signs are around us, the celebration changes from a picnic to a dinner party, a symposium on living, on transitions.

I love this time of year. Of course, if you've known me for a while you know that I love every time of year.  I love it like I love a good Malbec, it has a rich, complex flavor that I really don't have time to think about as I experience it.

So complexity, introspection, harvest and transition - deepening and darkening. Good verbs, good adjectives.

Shall we see how the leaves dance?

Scarbourough, Maine