I live my life in growing orbits,
which move out over the things of the world.
Perhaps I can never achieve the last,
but that will be my attempt.
I am circling around God,
around the ancient tower,
and I have been circling for a thousand years,
and I still don't know if I am a falcon,
or a storm,
or a great song.
- Rainer Maria Rilke, The Book of Hours
And so she presents the first chapter-poem, which she titles “Taoing”:
The way you can go
isn’t the real way.
The name you can say
isn’t the real name.
Heaven and earth
begin in the unnamed:
name’s the mother
of the ten thousand things.
So the unwanting soul
sees what’s hidden,
and the ever-wanting soul
sees only what it wants.
Two things, one origin,
but different in name,
whose identity is mystery.
Mystery of all mysteries!
The door to the hidden.
In a sentiment that calls to mind Susan Sontag’s abiding admonition against interpretation, Le Guin writes:
Everything Lao Tzu says is elusive. The temptation is to grasp at something tangible in the endlessly deceptive simplicity of the words… It is the profound modesty of the language that offers what so many people for so many centuries have found in this book: a pure apprehension of the mystery of which we are part
Winter has it's own palette...moody blues, creams, whites...especially here in Montana. Those colors elicited these two pieces:
The End is the Beginning I & II--A Labyrinth Journey.
24"x24"x2.5 acrylic, gold leaf and glazed, they hold labyrinths impressed in venetian plaster. When we were in Hawaii in January 2018, we hiked and walked the most beautiful labyrinth setting I've ever experienced. It was that walk that inspired these two pieces. When we travel I check a website that is a registry of labyrinths around the world. It is really helpful in finding out of the way walks. This one is on public land, and about a 2 mile hike in. Mind blown!
My month of February started in such a delightful way! I met with eight brownies, a couple moms and a grandma leader and we worked on their painting badge. Second and third graders are so energizing! I was a brownie Scout and Junior scout in my younger years and loved the experience. I brought my heirloom scout outfit and scouting books. It was fun to share with the girls. I think their paintings turned out beautiful – but most important - each girl was proud of her masterpiece!
As a working artist/retired art educator, I've always lived the artful life. Let's share!