The Framing

In Memoriam Kevin Michael Davis

Doors at Chaco Canyon photograph by Kevin Davis (2/16/1982 – 7/21/2010)

The Framing” a poem by Richard Brenneman

This is the anniversary of our son’s death in Poughkeepsie, New York from cancer ten years ago. This is always a sad day for Ethel, I, and our daughters, Sonja Bingen and Mary Wood, every year. This blog was started in honor of Kevin, who was a wonderful web designer, photographer, artist, and poet. This year we are publishing one of Kevin’s most iconic photographs, a doorway found at the Chaco Canyon ruins in New Mexico, and Richard Brenneman’s wonderful poem about the photograph, remembering someone who was deeply, deeply loved.


by Richard Brenneman

Ekaphrastic poem celebrating the Kevin Davis photograph,  “Doors at Chaco Canyon”  

Picture this --
seen through the lens of a camera;
eye sighting perfectly this line of sight, 
image remaining after.
The photographer has entered into
this, his picture.
A framing frames the ancient remains,
frame within frame like stone ghosts
from the living to the not living.
During the day, the doors,
like sideways viewed Chinese boxes, point the way
to the sky, or a blank wall
where the lords of death
(or alternatively, the lords of life)
are lodged beyond, whether
in kiva, hogan, teepee,
pyramid -- the mountain of gods.
At night invisible,
you can barely see the framed gates.
Above, the moonlight,
a few stars shine bright:
Polaris, Sirius, Aldebaran.
The gods of old-time
have come for you --
you who framed this image.
Time into framing,
gate, window, doorway --
starlight seeps out
light from unseen life
in sunrise or twilight,
you who sighted this
in your view finder.
If we look at this image askew,
we can almost see you as shadow,
invisible among
the dust motes, the whirling dervishes
slipping through the frame of time,
the ancient gateways
to join the lords of life, of death
to ascend timeless, bodiless
to the stars,
to become framed
as infinite starshine.


Filed under Art, Photography, poems, Poetry

16 responses to “The Framing

  1. My heart cries for you and Ethel and your daughters…my soul feels for each of you…although, what I say can never be enough.

  2. Doorways into the light is such an appropriate image…

  3. I’ve always loved this photo Tom and Ethel – it simply resonates with hints of profundity. Certainly a wonderful gift that your son has bestowed upon us all. So this is the tenth anniversary of his death? How utterly sad you must all feel. I am so glad that he has left a body of work that is so memorable and moving. With deep sympathy, John

  4. Ten years is a blink of an eye when it comes to grieving for a lost child. My continuing sympathy to you all.
    This is a wonderful tribute to your son – the amazing photo and the wonderful poem. Thank you for sharing with us.


    On the twenty-first
    Ten years ago
    Your son
    Claimed this annual

    On the twenty-fifth
    Two years ago
    My wife
    Stepped up
    To take her own place.

    Shoulder to shoulder they,
    Shoulder to shoulder we.
    Another burden,
    Beacon, memorial.
    Nothing but memory

    Stands the test of time.
    And some day
    One day,
    One fatal day
    Not even that.


  6. Reblogged this on Ben Naga and commented:
    If I may?

  7. Sayword

    Wonderful poem.
    Sending blessings.

  8. Love to you, Sayword. Ethel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s