Remains Of The Day, Of The Dead

Symbols And Meanings Of The Changing Light Of A New Season

GE McKerrihan
5 min readNov 15, 2022


A woman’s portrait surrounded by drying marigolds.
“Fading Marigolds and Piercing Eyes” — Photo bu Author

The thing that is by far the most noticeable, since moving to South Centro a week ago, is the change in the light. In many ways it seemed to happen overnight.

Residing close to the equator, there are only two hours difference, between the shortest and longest days here. That represents a minimal change. Yet the change in light belies the facts.

I can only assume it has to do with the angle of the sun, perhaps. I only know that the days suddenly became brighter as soon as the Day of the Dead celebrations ended. Could it be that culture trumps physics? In this unique culture, I believe anything is possible.

I just know when looking at the image above, I feel a power that is beyond the obvious. The photo is faded. The marigolds are faded. The paint colors in the background are faded. Yet the power shining through this woman’s eyes is not faded at all.

If anything, her piercing gaze becomes stronger, when set amongst all of the fading qualities surrounding her gaze. The change of light seems to power her direct gaze, the power in the intensity of her eyes. I can only say, it is part of the ancient power of Oaxaca.

Masks of man and his best friend, a dog.
“Man and His Best Friend” — Photo by Author

Not far from the portrait above I encountered these two souls. Man, and his best friend. They are both wearing the make up of, Dia de los Muertos.

They are both wearing the masks of of their ancestors. They are both celebrating their individual, and collective, heritage. Man’s fate has always been closely intertwined with the fate of his best four legged friend.

Where one goes the other goes, makes no difference whom is leading the way. It is a spiritual connection, a psychic connection. A connection formed by their collective DNA.

Fading marigolds on the street.
“Fading Marigolds on the Sidewalk” — Photo by Author

I continue to be fascinated by the energy of discarded marigold blossoms. I see them everywhere. They…



GE McKerrihan

I’ve been using the camera for nearly 50 years. I write about Photography, Art, Travel, and Life. Top Writer in Photography, Art, Creativity, and Inspiration.