The landscape painter at the artist colony in the country noted for its messianic light, its sparse, hard-to-capture beauty, complains she's come all this way to paint al fresco but the mosquitoes have driven her inside, no matter the netting on her hat, her cuffed sleeves and pants, a heavy does of Deet. They bite through everything. And when she tries to snap a picture, a breathy handkerchief of mosquitoes flutters over the lens. What can I do? she moans, trapped in a dull and narrow room, thinking of booking a ticket back to her studio in Vancouver. Paint the mosquitoes, god replies. Lorna Crozier from God Of Shadows 2018 McClelland & Stewart (image credit: Trichy Insights)
The past few days, just when I thought that I am adjusting to this strange new world where everything is familiar but unknown at the same time, I have been thrown “off course” again by the senseless killing that has taken place on Canada’s east coast. I am filled with a sense of time that feels like I’m in a fun house with the crazy mirrors that reflect altered images, a warped me. My words are held in a lump in my throat so instead I share with you the words of Joseph Campbell:
“People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think that’s what we’re really seeking. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive.”
(photo credit: Sebastien Gabriel)
Our crazy world has become even crazier.Trying to make sense of lives lost to a virus suddenly seems easier than trying to make sense of lives lost to a gunman – someone pretending to be a police officer for G** sake.
Unease bulges in my throat. I no longer recognize my world. I long for solitude but I don’t want to be alone. Stepping into running shoes I walk out the door, the energy to run gone with the twist of the doorknob.
I walk without a destination, to calm my nerves. I try not to think about families destroyed because they trusted a uniformed person.
I try not to think about too many people, too close together on the pathway. I veer to the overgrown winter grass. When people, dogs, bikes, kids head toward me, I freeze. I wish they would spread out.
When I get home, I bake cookies. Flour, butter, oatmeal, sugar,everything carefully measured, following an ordinary recipe.
But each time I hear a news broadcast between songs on the radio, I am reminded we live in a time that is anything but ordinary.
Peeking in the oven hoping to see the cookies spread out, knowing I have done nothing wrong, I still find myself whispering, I’m sorry.
(photo credit: Engin Akyurt)
Tonight I offer you a poem by David Whyte. This particular poem speaks to me at this time of so much change and upheaval in our lives. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Start Close In by David Whyte Start close in, don't take the second step or the third, start with the first thing close in, the step you don't want to take. Start with the ground you know, the pale ground beneath your feet, your own way to begin the conversation. Start with your own question, give up on other people's questions, don't let them smother something simple. To hear another's voice, follow your own voice, wait until that voice becomes an intimate private ear that can really listen to another. Start right now take a small step you can call your own don't follow someone else's heroics, be humble and focused, start close in, don't mistake that other for your own. Start close in, don't take the second step or the third, start with the first thing close in, the step you don't want to take.
As spring rain washes away winter remnants during this time of Covid our hearts turn toward the sun. Somehow the tilt of the earth is a little different. If we aren't careful we may lean too far and fall off.
As we continue to settle into accepting that we will be dealing with the corona virus for some time I came across this little piece of advice. Unfortunately I don’t have a name to give credit to. (The Batman image credit goes to Clipart Pin by Liran S)
Whatever you’re doing today, do it with all the confidence of a four-year-old in a Batman t-shirt.
Have a great day. Continue to be kind, to others and yourself.
“See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; see the stars, the moon, and the sun, how they move in silence… we need silence to be able to touch the souls.”Mother Teresa
There is a road from the eye to the heart that does not go through the intellect.G.K. Chesterton
(photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash)
“When you understand how to love one thing –
then you also understand how best to love everything.”Novalis
The poem I've written today was inspired by the writing of Jimmy Pappas. The Secret Ingredient For a simple dessert I wash fresh raspberries to remove any trace of Covid-19. I pop one in my mouth, let water squish with the flesh of the berry on my tongue. Now I make butternut squash soup with produce purchased on the first outing in a month: fresh butternut squash, leeks, onions and potatoes, unsalted butter and farmer market carrots. A granny smith apple, peeled and cored adds a hint of tartness. After it simmers for awhile I add fresh cream, a sweet childhood delight, that swirls rich and smooth. The table is set for many guests. Please join me. I have prepared a bowl especially for you.