We Must Cultivate Our Own Garden

Reminiscence of Grandma’s Garden Gate

Sitting up in bed with my morning coffee, I looked up again at one of my watercolors we keep framed and hanging in the bedroom. The composition always brings to mind words from my Mom about the morning she brought me home from the hospital over sixty-six years ago. She still tells me that the fragrance of lilacs blooming greeted her when she carried me through the garden gate of my Dad’s parents’ farm. That was the reason I painted this composition; Sandi and I purchased this gate from an antique store in Lubbock years ago for the express purpose of bringing it home and my painting it.

Continuing to think over the painting, I went to the bookcase and retrieved my volume of Candide’s Voltaire, which closes with these words:

. . . but we must cultivate our own garden.

Those words haunt me because I awoke this morning, my head filled with the acrid smoke of degrading words wafting through our atmosphere from our perennial political rancor. Some people seem to crave this diet. I am not among them. Years ago, when I started this blog, I wished to send words out into the social media torrent that would make readers feel better, instead of worse, living in this current climate. I believe we have the strength to determine what to fix our minds upon, and I further believe the ancient Proverb that states “for as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.”

My continued reading in Zola’s The Masterpiece continues to fill me with richness of thought. The words Claude spoke to his author friend may as well have been directed at me:

“Why should you worry?’ said Claude, after sharing Sandoz’s silence for a moment. “You’re happy, you’re working, you’re producing something!”

Studio Eidolons

Walking down the hall and entering Studio Eidolons with a glad heart, I sat down to one of my drafting tables and made a collage greeting card, using folding card stock with matching envelope from a vast collection I have been saving and hoarding for over a decade. While refurbishing my studio over past months, I have opened boxes and cabinets stuffed with art-related materials that I had forgotten about and decided I would begin making things with them once again.

Once the collage/card task was completed, I went to the other drafting table and resumed work on the trout fly still waiting for me. This is a Parachute Adams pattern that I could possibly finish later today. It will complete a series of three trout flies I have been commissioned to paint.

Parachute Adams in Progress

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

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2 Responses to “We Must Cultivate Our Own Garden”

  1. sienablue Says:

    Thank you for the words you send into this online space, for a view into your studio, and a chance to see your wonderful artwork. I agree, we should not be passive consumers of all the negativity spewing out right now, but we should curate our inputs wisely.

    Less TV, less news scrolling, and less social media has been part of my prescription for staying sane. More art, more walks, more quiet time is helpful too.

    Now, more than ever, Philippians 4:8

    “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

    Like

    • davidtripp Says:

      We are certainly on the same page here. I have to force myself to stop scanning the news stations, on my smart phone as well as laptop. Lady Gaga once called social media “the toilet of the Internet.” I’m embarrassed at how often I get sucked in to that black hole. But . . . I turned it off yesterday and have stayed away today. How amazing, your reference to Philippians 4:8–I wrote that out in my journal this morning right after the Voltaire and Proverbs quotes, but left it off my blog, thinking I had already tossed out enough references. Thanks for putting it back in!

      Like

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