Fuel

Only slowly have I become aware of the enormous reservoir

that floats above me like a helium ship

vast, volatile impossible

I am Astonished

Studio-FloorThanksgiving

I’d have noticed it years ago, but

I’ve only recently developed the habit

of looking up

BackDeckLeavesDetail2

Like the water towers in every small town

there’s a name writ in large letters across its curved side

My name.

My volatility is contained there,

my Impossible.

AshDeckYellow

This is the floating reservoir of my anger,

Incendiary rage over anything I’ve ever felt betrayed by,

dis-empowered by, diminished, abused, whether

personal, global, direct or witnessed,

small or large, significant or not

all of it,

in delicate, breath-taking balance with

my Joy, my Love,

my too-few moments of ring-toned humility

 

AshDeckYellow3

I’ve stored it all

Up there.

AshDeckYellow2

I’d no idea I had this much fuel to work with.

 

#Selfie 18: Spiral in; Spiral out

4:30am in the studio is like hanging out with a special old friend I’ve not seen for a long time.  We both like gentle light, strong hot coffee.  We share a deep enjoyment of the act of listening to the day as it begins.  I feel my face wake up, muscle by muscle, and take it’s vertical, day-time shape, As my trusted friend and witness, 4:30am is content to hold the space for this to happen.

This is a huge canvas that has served as the 'catcher of drips' on my studio wall for the past six years.  On the left are the drips from 5 years worth of painting.  On the right, from the past five months.  River Cafe drips, #Selfie drips, art class drips....
This is a huge canvas that has served as the ‘catcher of drips’ on my studio wall for the past six years. On the left are the drips from 5 years worth of painting. On the right, from the past five months. River Cafe drips, #Selfie drips, art class drips….

Because of personal circumstances I lived in this studio for ten months, including the three it took to paint ten #Selfie paintings, write the blog, rehearse the show, and perform / launch the idea on June 20.  On June 22 I moved all of my stored stuff – beds, dressers, books, bookshelves, pots, pans, chairs, clothing – and all the memories they contained into a house.  Out of my chrysalis, into a house.  A shock.

If you’ve ever seen a butterfly emerge you’ll know that their wings are tiny when they climb out of their old tiny tiny space.  It’s impossible for them to fly at this stage – they need air, and time to breathe their wings into being. They need to stay still.  (For reference – try this)

falls2_October2013

I’ve been deeply divided on the stillness issue since my move.  Not comfortable with it, since there are things to be done, structures to build, schedules to draw and cats to herd.  Book to write, applications, meetings, proposals, paintings, practise…. and now also dishes, laundry, lawn, garden, stairs, appliances.  I’ve been clumsy, this past month, with all of it.

Artichoke_flower

In honour of the creative process I’d like to suggest here that each of us is in one stage of metamorphosis at any given time – egg; caterpillar; chrysalis; butterfly – perhaps even several at a time, through overlapping projects, or new; developing; changing; long-term relationships.   Two things of note – a) one stage is not better than another; this is a circular, perpetual cycle – i.e., yes you get wings at some point, but then you’re an egg again after that….  b) it’s better if you acknowledge and think about which stage you’re at in any given project, scenario, or in relationship with the world.

It’s never ever easy to change, if the change is real.  In fact, change is deeply uncomfortable, clumsy and awkward, especially if you resist.  And oh, but we do, don’t we.

at my house.
at my house.  waiting while my wings grow big.

Thank The Maker, then, for making Change the only constant in our lives.  Without these shocks that send us deep deep into our internal, uncomfortable places, the dark dark shadows that make our small selves whimper with fear – without this we would be without humility, without compassion, unsoftened by love and forgiveness.  Calloused and hardened, encased in self-judgement, self-righteousness, criticism that closes its’ ears to learning.  Our beautiful, winged souls would wither, and eventually die.

It’s true – I have always wanted to fly.  So I will do my best to understand and dissolve this resistance I feel, and love what comes.

#Selfie 14: trust

acres of open
acres and acres of open grassland like water in the wind
but grass sings differently than water, if you listen
Grass sings air

As it turns out, this is a whole different technical planet than what I'm used to. REALLY interesting, working from a base red like blood.  It's like looking at your hand with the sun behind it.  Everything pulses.
As it turns out, this is a whole different technical planet than what I’m used to. REALLY interesting, working from a base red like blood. It’s like looking at your hand with the sun behind it. Everything pulses.

On the treadmill today I close my eyes and listen to Africa
my shoulders stop fighting gravity and every muscle is fluid
easy, open, walking steady and forever like a nomad
eating distance like nourishment

interesting as I get closer to d-day - my camera has chosen today to refuse to focus....  I'll just... let that happen
interesting as I get closer to d-day – my camera has chosen today to refuse to focus…. I’ll just… let that happen

This is when the air lifts me and my wings spread out
My god, they are vast, these wings of mine, and I am Above
Not looking down but like an eagle, at everything
Soaring in the singing air

By tomorrow morning these two will be in the hall, and the next two up & talking.  Stay with me, folks....
By tomorrow morning these two will be in the hall, and the next two up & talking. Stay with me, folks….

There’s nothing left but trust, at this point.

More to come, & happy Sunday to all,

K