Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Half Dome: 121907

Dome Zone and "Moment" poem (c) by Kirk Jordan

Today's Mighty Work features the back side of the Arkansas State Capitol, photographed chronologically from early November to mid December, with the Maples in the first frame giving way to the late falling Bradford Pear in the latter. With exception of the storm pic, each photo depicts the glow of the setting sun, as cast upon the western face.

As is, Christmas time is a special high use time for the Capitol, as thousands upon thousands of school children come and offer gifts of choral song. And while I have gotten a bit used to it, there are those moments (like the one referenced below ) in which the seasonal mill gives way to the truly awe inspiring.

Moment. 11/30/2001, 12:61PM


The planets stood in line
like a key in a lock
and the stars spelled out
fantastical words.

Today, for one brief moment,
no one bled, and the dailies
all fell silent as the bullets shimmied
backward up the barrels.

Today, on my lunch break
a choir of
local teenage angels from the Benton High-school choral
to a crowd of five,
lifting splendiferous voices like
some organic pipe-organ
into the dome,
and singing:

Oh, come let us adore Him.

Today there
was an extra minute
on the clock.

Borrowed from


Thursday, December 6, 2007

Avian Flew: 12/06/07

Suspended animation (c) by Kirk Jordan

Pics One through Four - Great Blue Heron in flight. White River fishing Trip, October 07.

Pic Five. Egret in flight, Lake Conway overflow arena next to old Highway, just outside of Conway. November 07. (Orange cast on the water is that of reflecting fall foliage. The black squiggle marks are the dried stems of Lily-pads. -- Can you find the ducks in the photo?


Some quick thoughts on the General Theory of Evolution (In contradistinction to the Special Theory of Evolution.)

To his credit, Charles Darwin offered a number of criteria by which his
speculations concerning comprehensive (or Macro) Evolution might be found wanting. In Origin of Species, Darwin writes: "If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down." (Origin of Species.)

As is, there are any number of organs and structures evidenced in living things that provide just such a challenge. For example, the feathered wing of a bird. It is hard to conceive of anything short of a full-blown working wing that would be anything but a hindrance to its bearer. And here is the irony. "Natural Selection" - Darwin's great guiding principle, would itself render a creature with a something like a part wing, less fit to survive.

And then there is the feather itself – a structure of startling beauty and detailed engineering. Until such a feather be fully fashioned, and given to the art of flight, it is hard to envision a benefit of a “less-than-feather.”

Some evolutionists, however have bold imaginations. Consider this example as provided by Gerhard Heilman, from his book "The Origin of Birds (1923)."

From being an terrestrial runner the ((reptile like)) animal now turns an arboreal climber, leaping further and further from branch to branch, from tree to tree and from the trees to the ground. Meanwhile the first toe changes to a hind toe so adapted as to grasp branches. As the hind limbs while running on the ground have abandoned the reptilian position, they are kept closer to the body when leaping takes place, the pressure of the air acting like a stimulus, produces, chiefly on the forelimbs and the tail, a parachutal plane consisting of longish scales developing along the posterior edge of forearms and the side edges of the flattening tail.
By the friction of the air, the other edges of the scales become frayed, the frayings gradually changing into still longer horny processes, which in the course of time become more and more featherlike, until the perfect feather is produced. From wings, tails and flanks, the feathering spreads to the whole body. The lengthening of the penultimate phalanges of the fingers is attained by using the claws for climbing and this elongation has been very propitious to the subsequent development of the wing.
The more intensive use of the arms, however, has also lengthened these, and laid claim to more powerful muscles for the movement of the same: this again has reacted on the breast bone, the two lateral halves of which have coalesced and ossified completely, forming a projecting ridge for the origin of the muscles.
Then accelerated metabolic process, finally, produced an increased caloricity protected the feathering until the warm blooded state was attained.

(Heilman, the Origin of Birds (1926) as quoted by Michael Denton - Evolution, a Theory in Crisis (1985), p 204)

The Mighty Works Project exists to herald "weak" imaginations. (See above.)

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Triple Orb: 11/04/07

OF all insects, no one is more wonderful than the spider, especially with respect to their sagacity admirable way of working.....
And what is still more wonderful, I know I have several times seen, in a very calm and serene day at that time of year, standing behind some opaque body that shall just hide the disk of the sun and keep off his dazzling rays from my eye, multitudes of little shining webs and glistening strings of a great length, and at such a height as (that one would think they were tacked to the sky by one end, were it not that they were moving and floating. And there often appears at the end of these webs a spider floating and sailing in the air with them, which I have plainly discerned in those webs that were nearer to my eye. And once [I] saw a very large spider, to my surprise, swimming in the air in this manner, and others have assured me that they often have seen spiders fly.

from : Of Insects by Jonathan Edwards (1723, age 20)
*Ps (I know Spiders are not now called insects, but I suspect the usage has changed since the young Mr. Edwards wrote.)

For the full letter/essay see:

Flying Orb (c) by Kirk Jordan
Orb one: Sun
Orb two: Sun on water
Orb three: Orb Spider

Today's Mighty Work features the astonishing first stages of what "will" be a huge orb "wheel" web, as built by an astonishing Orb spider -- This one building on the bank of Spencer Lake in Conway Arkansas (October 2007)
I had the pleasure of watching this Orb for about twenty minutes. It was in the beginning stages of the web, and was working the large outer perimeter, after establishing what appeared to be a three strand "frame." (I understand that the web will become more "visible" as it progresses. After establishing a minimal frame, the spider will go back over the web and give portions greater strength, then add the sticky inner fibers last of all.)
As is, Orbs take to building gigantic webs with visible flourish every Indian Summer in Arkansas. I don't know what these spiders do, or where they hide the rest of the year, but I have seen that there are a few weeks every Fall, usually just before Halloween, in which the Orbs go to town. (More on Orb webs in a future MW edition)

For more on Orb Spiders see:

The Mighty Works Project exists to join with Jonathan Edwards in praising "the exuberant goodness of the Creator, who hath not only provided for all the necessities, but also for the pleasure and recreation of all sorts of creatures, and even the insects and those that are most despicable."

Friday, October 19, 2007

Rainbow Alley: 10/19/07

Some odd thoughts concerning moonbeams and rainbows

There is a good chance that if you are reading this text, you subscribe to philosophical realism. (Not because you are reading this text, but because most of the citizens this side of globe do.

In short, that means that believe that your brain really is sitting inside your head and that your conscious thoughts are not being stimulated by aliens using a Matrix gizmo. You believe that the world is “real”. When you consider the many things that a appear in the world, you affirm that those same things have a certain independent existence, and are not the same as “yourself” -- And that these same entities would continue to exist in some form, even if you did not. (Though it is hard to think about what reality would be, if you were not there to apprehend it.)

For more info on Realism see:

On the other hand, you recognize (because you like to entertain odd ideas) that the way in which you perceive the world renders it in a way that is solely your own. If you and your dog watched a football game, you would experience the range of conditions before your senses in different ways. You would see things that would have no counterpart in your dog’s vision – or comprehension. She would hear and smell things beyond your imagination. In short, given different sensing organs and two different brains, you both would observe the same event, but experience it in quite different ways.


Over the years I have given myself to the task of cultivating odd thoughts. At certain times, I imagined that I was entertaining notions that had never been entertained before. Then I find, with a little reading... or a talk with my kids, that not only have many people entertained these same thoughts, but that some fellow a thousand years earlier thought these same thoughts categorically, an that there is a developed language for talking about these same ideas – with great precision.

As it is, philosophers since the time of Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) have sometimes referred to two levels of “reality.” Kant used the word “Noumena” to describe a “thing as it really is”, and the word “Phenomena” to describe the way we interpret that same thing through our senses. Given the argument, the only reality we really experience is the latter. This line of reasoning has led some people to suggest that the only real reality (or the only reality which we can talk about) is the Phenomenal -- that which is apprehended by our senses. The noumenal object -- “as it is” -- is simply unknowable. Kant responded to this line of reasoning by suggesting that ..

"...though we cannot know these objects as things in themselves, we must yet be in a position at least to think them as things in themselves; otherwise we should be landed in the absurd conclusion that there can be appearance without anything that appears." 

For more on Kant, Noumena, and Phenomena see:

All of which brings me to moonbeams and rainbows.

If you were to join me and ten-thousand others in downtown St Louis, we might all look up and see the St. Louis Arch. The arch would vary in scale, apparent shape, and even color, depending on where we as viewers were in relationship to the arch. Ten-thousand viewers would render ten-thousand arches. Even so, we would tend to argue that we were NOT sensing ten thousand independent arches, rather we all experienced the same “Noumenal” arch, in a vast phenomenal variation.

Now let’s take it a step farther.

Imagine we are gathered in St. Louis, this time on the west bank of the Mississippi River, looking east at a rising full moon, just as the sun sets at our back. Like the arch, we assume one moon. Many frames.

Then, looking east and across the river, we see a “cobblestone skim milk path” or - the stretched reflection of the moon as it appears on the water. And jolly of jollies, not only does the moon-path stretch, but it stretches a path right to my feet. Or yours. Indeed, every person, along the bank for miles and miles makes the same claim. The moon path cuts a path strait to "our" feet.

Only thing, when I look at those other persons lining the bank, I don’t see a moon path going to each of their feet. I see cold dark water before everyone but me.

And so it goes. Each person, when contemplating moon glow on the water gets a personal showing that is his alone. Indeed, the whole phenomena of moon-path on water requires an OBSERVER to be realized. In one sense, the whole river is a continual ribbon of silver -- or black; however, each observer can only see that one small sliver of silver before himself -- and only when he is in a certain angled relationship with the moon and water.

And so it is for rainbows.

A rainbow is not something like the St. Louis arch that exists in “a” place. Rather, a rainbow is possibility that takes a viewer to be realized.

First, a little bit about rainbows.

Rainbows are most likely to be seen when the sun is low on the horizon. Rainbows (like a full moon) are always opposite the sun. That means any rainbow that you see in the later part of the day, will be to the east.

Rainbows are not really “bows” – or flat. They would be full circles, except for the ground which obscures the bottom of the bow! You are most likely to see a rainbow, when you are not in the rain yourself, but rather the sun (behind your back) is shinning into the outer edge of a rain system. The rain system itself can not be too violent, as fast moving rain alters the prismatic effect of the drops. In the end, a rainbow is what happens when you are in a very specific angular relationship with the sun and rain, and millions of little “chandeliers” scatter sunlight back your way.


Beyond that, the rainbow is a phenomena that is absolutely contingent upon you as a viewer to make it work. You move, the rainbow moves with you. Another person, down the street (if they see the rainbow at all) will see the bow in an entirely different location. Indeed, when you see a rainbow you are the only person seeing THAT rainbow, and what you are seeing is something like portion of the base of a cone… and you as the viewer are the tip of that cone! Without you (or a camera lens standing in your place), the rainbow would not be where it is!

Indeed, We might speak of a noumenal rainbow (as it is, apart from perception), but that would mean we are considering the whole refractory fog, containing thousands and thousands of “potential” rainbows. And if we speak of a single noumenal rainbow, we must also include the viewer in the formula.

So… next time you see a rainbow, tell the person with you that she can not see “your” rainbow … She must see her own. Or something like that.

Pre-Haircut rainbow

Post haircut rainbow

And God said, "This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth...Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life." (Genesis 9: 12,13, 15)


Today's Mighty Work features at least three different rainbow systems (three different days.) And, given yesterday's weird weather, I could have added a fourth.

All pics in the last few weeks, Central Arkansas

Pic One, a fragment of Downtown Little rock, looking east.
Pics two through Four: Lake Conway near the Mayflower exit.
Pic five (post haircut rainbow, Conway, about a week later.)
Pic Six, (Conway, the day after the Mayflower exit rainbow.

For more on rainbows see:



The Mighty Works Project exists to consider the idea that God alone sees Noumenon. Indeed, He sees every potential rainbow within a refractory cloud.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Bonus Rainbows 10/30/07

Rainbow over Little Rock

Rainbow over White River

Bonus Bows (c) Kirk Jordan

Pic One, sometime after the last rainbow post. Little Rock, AR
Pic Two: Rainbow Trout over the White River (near Calico Rock, AR) that I caught while on a fishing trip a little over a week ago, with some of the men from the "Landing" - a house-church fellowship located Conway AR. The fish tasted great.

Bonus Color:

i.e.: Posting of the Colors.

The Mighty Works Project exists to further odd associations.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Full of Eyes: 10/10/07

"And before the throne
there was a sea of glass like unto crystal;
and in the midst of the throne,

and round about the throne,
were four beasts

full of eyes before and behind."
(the Apocalypse of St. John (Book of Revelation), Chapter 4:6)

(It may be an odd association, but I have often thought of water drops as being like a kind of eye.. .)

Convention of Cohesive Condensation Cavorting in a Continuum of Convex Cones -- or, visions of a mutant fly(or something like that) (c) by Kirk Jordan

All pics, sometime in September, 2007 Little Rock AR.

Today's Mighty Work features water condensation that just happens to be on a large glass "wall" of the Clinton Presidential Library, in Little Rock Arkansas. In fact, you can see the distant Little Rock skyline in the first frame, or inverted within each droplet. I am not sure if it could ever be recorded, but if I understand light and lens correctly, not only does each drop capture and invert the skyline light streaming its way, but it casts the same a kind of expanding, but less focused, cone. So... if we could hang a giant sheet of film behind window pain...and flip the sun on for just a second...we might record ten thousand photos all at once (or something like that).


The Mighty Works Project exists to invite you to add your "two" (eyes) to ours, in a chorus of multi-eyed praise.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Under a Blood Red Sky: 09/28/07

Giant Cannas (c) by Kirk Jordan

All pics, early September 2007, from a plot on the North East corner of the Arkansas State Capitol.
Natural light and electronic flash.

About the title. Some of you may wonder why "under a blood red sky" - as the sky here looks pretty blue - or grey.

Turns out, that the Canna flower excels at taking red that is hidden in the "transparent" light falling on our planet, and cutting it out of spectrum. As such, the Canna has a red-repelling characteristic--which we call "red ."

The thought gets really big when you think of what it means when somebody throws a red-reflecting ball. The ball, as it flies through the air, continually intersects and weeds out red that it is hidden in the "unseen" spectrum. (I say unseen, because if there were no things which intersected the light... be they air molecules or buildings ...the light would blaze through space "unseen.") Should the ball (or Canna flower) ever intersect a patch of sky with no red present in the spectrum, it could not weed it out, and bounce it back at us. (So... should you ever subject a Canna flower to pure green light, it would not find any red light to reflect, and would appear to the eye as black.)


I hope, in the next few days, to share some pictures from what has been a powerful week in Arkansas. Over the last few days, thousands of people have gathered in Little Rock, to commemorate the actions of the "Little Rock Nine" - Nine African American students who braved hostile crowds in 1957 to integrate Central High. It has been a week deep in reflection for a city as we acknowledge our troubled past, and consider the many ways we have grown.


The Mighty Works Project exists to test the red and yellow receptors in your retina.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Only Color in Town; 08/25/07

Crepe Myrtle Mayhem (c) by Kirk Jordan

All pics, August 07/05 - Central Arkansas

As of today, Central Arkansas is in something of a brown-down wither. We did have a pretty wet early July, but have been largely rainless since. As such, the only notable color is still found on the explosive Crepe Myrtle Bushes.

Top two pictures feature extended exposures (deliberate camera motion) and flash - after sunset. Later two pictures feature flash in combination with day.


The Mighty Works Project exists to contemplate the relationship between Crepe Myrtle, war heads, and sea coral.

Note orignal post came with a Kinddom Arts Review: Phil Keaggy in Little Rock. for details see

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

My Passion: 8/08/2007

Passion Flower of the Christ (c) by Kirk Jordan

All pics, July 2007 - Little Rock or Conway AR

Today's Mighty Work features one of Arkansas's odder offerings.... The so-called Passion Flower.

The purple Passion Flowers in this series are still visible (if you get out of your car and cross a street), and are part of an overgrown weed patch that motorists can find on the south-bound entry ramp off of Rodney Parham Drive as it connects to Interstate 430 South bound. The Passion plot is not far from the traffic lights on Rodney Parham Boulevard.

(The white flowers in this series are from a plot that was near one of the Lake Conway overflow ponds. However, the highway mowing crew has since harvested the crop.)


Folks who have been with me a while will know the story behind the name. Early Spanish explorers in the New World encountered this prodigious flowering "vine" throughout the Southern states and saw within the flower, symbols from the crucifixion of Christ. Symbolic parts include: Purple Robe, crown of thorns, three spikes, and "forty lashes."

As for me, I certainly don't want to diminish such a grand vision, but I am more apt to see a dancing dust mop, or a drill-brush made from Ramen noodles.


The Mighty Works Project exists to encourage the citizens of Central Arkansas to be brave. Cross the street for yourself. Embrace the chiggers and behold a Passion Flower - live.


The original post came with this "kingdom arts review" featuring guitarist, Phil Keaggy

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Lace to Bird's Nest 8/02/2007

Transformation, Queen Anne's Lace to Bird-Nest Weed (c) by Kirk Jordan

All pics Central Arkansas, July 04, 06, and 07.

(Pic one is an extended hand-held exposure about an hour after sun-down. The white squiggle in the sky is the moon as recorded by a shaking hand.)

Today's Mighty work reveals how the doily-shaped Queen Anne's Lace (a prevalent weed-flower found across the South in mid summer) takes on its second name-sake - the Bird Nest Weed.

As is, the flower head of the QAL is composed of many smaller flower heads, that in turn look like miniature versions of the larger QAL flower pad. As the flower head matures, it folds back in upon itself, then opens once again to reveal a rich chalice of seed.


The Mighty Works Project exists to celebrate Divine slight of hand.

Note: original e-mail came with this Kindom Arts Profile of Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574)