I like to do two things. Write and make images. They may be in ink or pencil on my tiny pad, or with either of my cameras, or in my head. In fact, I write and “draw” a lot in my head. That’s why I’m not too concerned with hackers, or government brain trackers. They would immediately turn around and go back from whence they came, if they cared to venture to that nebulous territory.
A great thing about being an artist, though, is having been diligent through the years about saving and cataloging my film pictures. It turns out I have a pretty good record of where I’ve been, although not a great idea if I’ll get where I’m going!
So here I have two pictures of events, one recent, and one residing in memory. I’m not sure of a few things, but have many memories of others. Perhaps an explanation.
The old picture of me as a child epitomizes my babyhood. Here is the girl that is still inside of me, but she is different in so many ways. She is victimized by the other kids for being introverted, she is introverted because she is different.
She is smart. I wouldn’t say extraordinarily smarter than her peers; but interested in a lot of non-childish things, like art and science. She spends countless hours squatting at the edge of the lake at the resort where the picture was taken, staring at the small ones going about their business on the surface of the water, and on the submerged sand. She is impressed that although they are “ugly” in one sense to a child, they are quite unconcerned about their appearance, and seem content to pull twigs around or just sit quietly waiting for a meal to stroll by. She is hoping that in some way she can someday be as content, not worrying about a shout of “hey brillo” when she ventures out of the brick edifices of home.
Fast forward about 50 years. Half a century later, she is still apparently fascinated by what lies under. She is diligent about one thing. A garden that reappears each spring like clockwork. She is mindful of giving back to nature her due. She sees herself as a part of a beneficent universe that takes care of its own. Many physical changes, a metamorphosis of sorts has occurred. She has many scars, some necessary to maintain her health, some stupid and her own fault. She has seen much, and expects to see much more, of pain and discomfort and suffering. But, thankfully, her own pain and discomfort are her own, and as she did then, she doesn’t impose this on others, but gets to express this through her art.
However, there are some things that have changed for the positive. No more kids to bother her, but she gets to bother kids sometimes. And then walk away. Lots of pets and plants to take care of, and these always reward her somehow in their own way. She works through the issues, and comes to a crossroads and makes decisions, hopefully, wisely.
The difference, she is mature, in control, but there are some things that are still the same. As long as the growing keeps growing, and the universe spins, she will grow and spin along with it, happy or sad, knowing that in the center, the center of her being is the center of all that ever was and ever will be.
And so a new year of gardening begins.