Asphodel – 12″ x 12″ x 1″ – acrylic & ink on wood panel
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
– Wendell Berry (1934 – )
Asphodel is the last of five paintings I delivered this afternoon to the IO Gallery for their Girls, Girls, Girls show that opens next Saturday. I was in a bit of a tizzy this morning putting the finishing touches on two paintings and getting all five wired for hanging, but I made the wise decision to take a break and go for a long walk with my dog Heidi. It was just beginning to get hot, but we stayed mostly under the canopy of trees that line the road where we live and it was perfectly lovely. We saw birds and squirrels and chipmunks and butterflies and bees and even heard our resident red-winged hawk screeching overhead… and by the time we got home, my agitation had vanished, forgotten.
If you live anywhere in the area of Cornwall Bridge, CT, please stop by for the opening reception of Girls,Girls, Girls on June 14 from 5 – 7 pm. I would love to see you! The show runs through July 20.
digital collage created from two older paintings
I have been thinking
like the lilies
that blow in the fields.
They rise and fall
in the edge of the wind,
and have no shelter
from the tongues of the cattle,
and have no closets or cupboards,
and have no legs.
Still I would like to be
as the old idea.
But if I were a lily
I think I would wait all day
for the green face
of the hummingbird
to touch me.
What I mean is,
could I forget myself
even in those feathery fields?
When Van Gogh
preached to the poor
of course he wanted to save someone–
most of all himself.
He wasn’t a lily,
and wandering through the bright fields
only gave him more ideas
it would take his life to solve.
I think I will always be lonely
in this world, where the cattle
graze like a black and white river–
where the vanishing lilies
melt, without protest, on their tongues–
where the hummingbird, whenever there is a fuss,
just rises and floats away.
– Mary Oliver (1935 – )