Elected Silence, sing to me
And beat upon my whorlèd ear,
Pipe me to pastures still and be
The music that I care to hear.
Gerard Manley Hopkins, “The Habit of Perfection”
One of my precious friends, Dian Dar, a retired English teacher, recently shared with me poetry from Gerard Manley Hopkins, and the timing was sublime. Spring Break has arrived, and I slept in soundly this Saturday morning, waking to a dark and rainy day. The watercolor above I have just delivered to the Texas Friends and Neighbors Regional Art Exhibit to open in Irving, Texas April 29. About half of the remaining 75 pieces had already been submitted and I was able to peruse the gallery and see them up close. The show is a very strong one, and I am honored and humbled to be included. This evening I plan to attend the gallery talk given by the juror and view the slide show that has been assembled of all the works. I’m sorry to wait a month and a half for the exhibit to open.
Spring Break has arrived and I certainly need the rest. Today has been burned up by delivering art work and catching up on all my college grading that was a week old. I still have week-old high school stuff to grade as well, but I guess it can wait another day or two. Strangely, I’m not in the mood to paint today though my heart is filled with artistic aspiration, strange as that may sound. I have been more inclined to read, and especially to spend time lingering over poetry. Hopkins certainly has not disappointed me on this gray day. He and Paul Tillich have filled my weary soul with ideas that are uplifting and satisfying.
I devoted some considerable time to staring at this painting before delivering it, because I won’t have it around for viewing for quite a long time. That is the downside of exhibits–it’s nice to know others are looking at my work, but I do miss some of the images when they are no longer on my living room wall. I still remember the hours spent in the garage (man cave) studio when I worked on this one. And I recall the thrill of finding the creel in a Missouri antique store, of my good friends and fly fishing buddies lending me the antique fly box to open and include in the show, of the bamboo fly rod given me by an equine instructor in Colorado whose father had it custom made for him when he was a teeanger. The hat has spent years on my head, and I took delight in baptizing it in the Atlantic, Pacific, Aegean and Adriatic waters. The chair I found in a Missouri antique store. This picture just overflows in personal memories, and I was attached to it ever since I saw it taking shape beneath my brush.
Thanks for reading.
I paint in order to discover.
I journal when I feel alone.
I blog to remind myself that I am not alone.