I wait with much anticipation to continue working on my most recent sculpture tomorrow. I am stacking the individually constructed "bricks" to build a wall of sorts, upon which I will precariously balance. I intend to balance in a way that seems to be impossible to the observer, but balanced none the less.
"Don't you think you'd be safer down on the ground?' Alice went on, not with any idea of making another riddle, but simply in her good-natured anxiety for the queer creature. 'That wall is soverynarrow!"
As I have built and stacked the individual bricks, they have balanced, tumbled, been reconfigured and are being built, one upon another, trying to remain stable and steady. It is a carefully balanced game, such is life. I have been thinking about Humpty Dumpty, broken, needing to be put back together, and wondering if this is indeed a possibility.
We build things, they crumble and we try to build them once again, thinking that if only we build it right this time, it will not tumble. We build it the same way and still believe that his time it will be stable, and it is not. Sometimes, there comes a time when we realize that the rebuilding is futile. Some relationships are like glass. I recently read, "sometimes it's better to leave them broken than try to hurt yourself putting them back together".
Sometimes, it is just a balancing act, a puzzle of sorts, trying to put the right things into place, aligned just right, so there is enough stability to balance upon. We don't always get it right the first time around, but with perseverance, we can only hope that the pieces will fit together well enough to support us. Not necessarily the way we saw it playing out, but sturdy enough to support us the only way it can for now.
I am not quite sure the way this piece will play out. I never am. Therein lies the mystery, the challenge that compels me to build, and rebuild this sculpture. Tomorrow it will no doubt be new again. I welcome the challenge.
"In that case we start afresh," Humpty Dumpty went on.
This morning I was gifted with this sad but thought provoking e-mail from my sweetie:
"Sometimes, instead, we go to Los Angeles, where there are hummingbirds, and I love to watch them because they're so busy getting the most out of life."~~From Nora Ephron who died today at 71 from leukemia
It made me think once again about the hummingbird, who had breakfast with me this morning on the porch, maybe I too move my wings too fast in an effort to get the most out of life, rather than sitting on the porch waiting for the birds to come to me. Maybe that is getting the most out of life. Maybe?
The moment I sat on my chair on the deck, hot coffee in hand in the chill of the morning, I saw my new found friend, the bald eagle do the same on his seat high above the lake, as he alights on top of the towering evergreen, his vantage point for the time being. As I watch him, through my mother's binoculars, I see his head, ever alert, looking, noticing, his surroundings and the opportunities at any given moment. So is it with the "lone fisherman" in his tube on the lake waiting for his next opportunity. I am astounded by the patience they both exhibit, as they wait for their "catch of the day" the catch of the moment. I hear my mother's voice as I look at the world through her old lenses, telling me that I do too much. I ponder this, as I too often am moved to do. It is in the patient waiting, the looking, the seeing, the noticing, that the opportunities present themselves. I wonder how the fisherman and the eagle, can spend so much time Waiting...........They don't seem to be doing anything, yet the waiting and watching is enough, the being, never knowing what set of circumstances will be created for their perfect moment, the catch. Time seems to stand still, yet go on forever. How can I have that sort of patience, pausing, waiting, being, not doing? Maybe, it is not about the catch, but about the being present, the being in the moment. I watch them both, the eagle and the fisherman. Nothing seems to be happening, but maybe there is more happening than I can perceive. It is in the calm waiting, the patience, the stillness, the being, that the magic happens.
As I look out on the silhouette that becomes the end of day, with the glistening stillness of the lake after the rains, with the fish rising and the cries of " just one more cast" from my beloved, as the bats swoop down around him, he seems unmoved when the fish are jumping, yet maybe, he was spooked as he just came in from the perfect night of fishing. It is always a perfect time when the fish rise at this perfect stillness of the evening, when everything seems to ready for sleep. The mountains rise in their glory, and they remain for just a minute more as the sun sets and they seem to be lost in the horizon,although I know they will still be there in the morning. Things seem to disappear even though I know in my mind that they are always there. The stars are always there, we just can't see them during the day. The water is still. I spent the day trying to heal my once again injured back. I soaked, I rested, I tried to practice self care. On the drive up to the lake we talked and I processed the things we need, the things that serve us, and the things we discard, no longer needed, however painful, the things we leave behind. Not always an easy distinction, but important to distinguish none the less. The end of what no longer serves us and the beginning of beginnings. I rested all day, intending to remain inside with the driving rains outside my window. Then the sun revealed itself and a new day was born. Thanks to modern technology (did I actually say that?), I received a cell phone call from my sweetie on his float tube on the lake, telling me that the eagles were here!!! What a gift to me! I have only seen an eagle on two occasions in my life and they were moments to cherish. As I walked down to the dock, hip in spasm, I strained to see the eagle. I could only hear the cacophony of crows as they mocked them. As I looked through the foliage of the tall, stately evergreens, I could see the crows. Suddenly, I saw a small eagle circle over the lake. What a sight! I continued to strain my neck, trying to see what all the commotion was about, and I suddenly saw the regal eagle perched high in the tree, the crows swooping down, taunting him, trying to get him to move from his vantage point, yet he was unmoved by their antics. As I waited, patiently watching, he suddenly decided it was time. He swooped over the lake, hoping to grasp a snack, and joined in the dance with his partner, as they continued to dance over the lake looking for their next meal. I watched, entranced, cherishing the moment, and oh so glad I got off the couch, realizing that the healing was outside, waiting to be witnessed by me. I did not have my camera, as it was the last thing on my mind as I got into the car for the 2 and 1/2 hour drive the night before. I only have my mind, to record the moment, when I left everything behind and went outside, only to witness life happening, the free power of the eagles as they danced, reminding me that anything is possible.
I am a collaborator with nature, often using found objects in my clay sculpture. My greatest inspiration is my motherhood and nature. Working with clay is a tactile, spiritual interaction. It's a dance as the image emerges and takes on a life form of it's own. The story gradually reveals itself and not always upon completion of the piece. It is a gradual unfolding.... "What the caterpillar thinks is the end of the world...the butterfly knows is only the beginning!"
I keep my spirit vitalized by creating mixed media sculpture, sculptural drawings, exploring narrative photography, writing, participating in collaborative art projects, volunteering for various Portland organizations, walking in the woods and along the Oregon coast collecting the next sculpture inspiration that nature offers me, enjoying the solitude of the Lake in Washington, kayaking, camping, snorkeling in Hawaii, making my voice heard as a quiet activist for various humanitarian issues, appreciating live theater and music in Portland and enjoying the vastly rich life that Oregon has to offer me, but especially spending time with my family. I am savoring my new journey as I explore the middle road of Buddhism. I try to live an "intentional life" every day with "Jo Y"! I feel like a square peg who has finally found her square hole!
I am an artist/partner of The AIR Gallery