Category Archives: Flat ledge

The quarry itself, off Granite Street

Stone Wave – a 4 panel folding screen

Now on display at the Marblehead Arts Association, Marblehead, MA. As part of a dual exhibit on Resilient Landscapes, with my silk painting colleague -Susan Quateman.



Taking Rockport to Its Extremes – Part One – DROUGHT


In my 45 years on Cape Ann, I’ve experienced several cycles of extreme weathers. With the resurgent interest in photographing the quarries of Rockport evidenced by several photographers, painters, hikers, and nature lovers, I wish to share back to when I first encountered Flat Ledge Quarry (Swan’s Pit).
From 2001 through 2002, Rockport lost 85% of its stored water capacity. The extended drought revealed a landscape of quarry walls not seen since 1930. toward_drought

Above – 2002 Flat Ledge Quarry (expand to full size),  is a panoramic view that we may not see again in the measure of our lives. As the waters receded and the rail bed revealed along the right side of the quarry, I arrived every morning to document what was being uncovered. This vista was a daily descent into unknown territory.  For my friends Skip, Paul, Nick & Gil there is much to absorb from this image: reflections encompassed with an added ring of high water markings, the derelict stone sled in the foreground (invitation into the image plane, and a stop sign of silenced activity). Our enthusiasm for ‘liking’ pales  before the descent.

Below – 2002 ‘The Deep Empty.’

What is there to “like?” At best to bear silent witness, and this is one of the first lessons I absorbed from the great Rockport Drought, to speak on behalf of the landscape. To return day after day, hour after hour, to work the rock walls,  to trace the path of the quarry cutters with my own path. Soon, this led to my life long works – ‘Chapters on a Quarry Wall.’


White Light Folded…

White light folded, sheathing about her, folded.
The new years walk, restoring
Through a bright cloud of tears, the years, restoring
With a new verse the ancient rhyme. Redeem
The time. -T.S. Eliot, “Ash Wednesday”

Early morning snow on March 10, 2012, viewed across the floor of Flat Ledge Quarry, Rockport on Cape Ann, Massachusetts


the blow is creation

    the Blow is creation
& the Twist  the Nasturtium
is anyone of Ourselves
And the Place of it All?
Mother  Earth  Alone

– Charles Olson –


3.12.11 The Eternal Quarry

The Eternal Quarry

From deep deep within the quarry, fighting cat brier all the way


2.24.11 The Green Not Forgotten

The Green Not Forgotten

Though the world turn all to ice
The Green Not Forgotten
Seeks out the red flow
of a beating heart.

And this world does soften
the blue, streams once again
The Green Not Forgotten
Climbs and
Shoulders the world

-Les Bartlett – 2-24-2011

Immediate Light
The Green Not Forgotten