Friday, October 31, 2014
From the Calendar Series, "Beloved Person in Bird Costume Crossing the Night River" -- a gouache and watercolor painting from the 1980s by am.
Watch the river flow, here and here. Thank you to Candy for the inspiration for this post.
Sunday, October 26, 2014
Monday, October 20, 2014
Sunday, October 19, 2014
"Vi mot the gioi khong con bon min"
"The world without UXO," by Le Ho Huru Nghia - Che Lan Vien school
From PeaceTrees Vietnam:
Tran Thi Suong, a student at Gio Quang Secondary School in the Gio Linh district of Quang Tri province, wrote the following essay while attending PeaceTrees Vietnam's Mine Risk Education Summer Camp.
I remember a landmine accident in my village a few years ago. One afternoon, while working in a rice field, a farmer saw a small bomb. It was rusty and covered in soil. As he tried to use a hoe to throw it away it exploded. The farmer lost both of his arms. He went from being the bread winner in his family to being unable to work. The accident caused him and his family so many difficulties.
Although the war ended many years ago, its legacy is still present everywhere. In this peaceful time there are still many wives who have lost their husbands, children who have lost their fathers, and mothers who have lost their sons and daughters. There are many people who have been injured for life from landmine accidents.
To ensure safety for yourself and those around you, when you see landmines or UXO:
- Don't go near, hold, throw or play with them
- Mark the dangerous area and tell an adult or the authorities
Learn more about PeaceTrees Vietnam's work in mine risk education here.
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Blue is the theme for these two mandalas.
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Coast Salish Day And Columbus Day Become One In Bellingham, Washington / Indigenous People's Day And Columbus Day Become One In Seattle, Washington
"Children from the Tulalip Tribes showing off their garments for a picture while taking in a view of downtown Seattle following a successful signing ceremony for Resolution No. 31538, honoring indigenous peoples by declaring the second Monday in October "Indigenous People's Day," Monday, October 13, 2014, at Seattle City Hall. (SEATTLEPI.COM Jordan Stead-- AP Photo)"
See additional article in the Bellingham Herald:
"By a 6-0 vote, City Council officially recognized Coast Salish Day on the date federally recognized as Columbus Day at its regular Monday night meeting, Oct. 13."
Here is more information about the Coast Salish peoples.
Monday, October 13, 2014
This is my favorite song these days. I just came in from a walk in the lonely forest and will have to settle down and begin today's work on the retraining program that will give me another chance to find a job.
My eyes have been bothering me. It's possible that I'm spending too much time looking at laptop screens.
This is my favorite quote for today:
Some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find a trout in the milk.
(Henry David Thoreau, on November 11, 1854, referring to an 1849 dairyman's strike, during which there was suspicion of milk being watered down)
Thursday, October 9, 2014
I've always been struck by the fact that, in this song, John didn't say that he didn't believe in God. What he did say was what he did believe in. He believed in himself. He believed in himself and Yoko. He believed in reality.
"All of us are apprenticed to the same teacher that the religious institutions originally worked with: reality."
I can't find any documentation for this, but my memory is that on the album where the song first appeared, John's song was titled "god" with a small "g."
The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali begin with the word "atha" which could be translated either as referring to "God, the root of all things" (not in the Jewish or Christian or Muslim sense of the word, but in the Native American sense of a mystery at the root of all things) or which could be translated as "here and now." My perception is that John was saying that he believed in "here and now."
Of interest to me is that, among many other spiritual traditions that John was curious about, he looked into Hindu thought. The song "Instant Karma" was a result of that. "Karma" is a Sanskrit word meaning action, work or deed. Yep. There are consequences to our actions.
The concept of "wheel" or "turning" is contained in the word "chakra," a concept of Hindu thought that John was likely familiar with, although he chose not to align himself with any religious or spiritual tradition, which is also my choice and a choice that many of us make.
Born: October 9, 1940, Liverpool, United Kingdom
Happy Birthday, John!
You would have been 74 years old today.
Thank you for singing about god/God so eloquently.
You were my favorite Beatle from the instant I first saw you singing on the Ed Sullivan Show in February of 1964 when I was 14 years old. You are dear to so many of our hearts.
"You burn so bright. Roll on John."
Here and now.
Addendum: See October 10 at whiskey river!
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
When I was in my 30s, I had a recurring dream of running at top speed from the top of one building to another in an unknown large city, performing astounding acrobatic feats. Someone was chasing me, but I knew they could never catch me. I was fearless. What a revelation to see my younger dreamself in these young men flying through the air with such grace and landing on their feet with no loss of momentum.
Many thanks to Doonesbury's Featured Videos for another splendid offering!
That gouache and watercolor painting I did in the late 1980s is "Beloved Person in Bird Costume Crossing the Night River." Here is another one from those years.
Something of that old fearlessness is coming back to me in my 66th year. It comes and goes.
"How long can I stay drunk on fear out in the wilderness?"
Monday, October 6, 2014
"Working with Intuition and Three Angels," gouache and watercolor, painted by am in 1992
Suddenly, inexplicably, I'm wondering if I still can get a ticket to see Bob Dylan at the Paramount in Seattle on Sunday, October 19.
Yep. There are still tickets left. I'll be sitting a little bit closer to where my seat was for the first Bob Dylan concert I saw at the Paramount Theater in the early 1980s -- up near the roof in the second to the last row.
Until just now, I had decided not to go to another Bob Dylan concert. A baffling process. Working with intuition and three angels. As my father used to say, "We'll see what we will see."
This is what I wanted to post before I began this post:
"The universe came into being with us together; with us, all things are one."
Sunday, October 5, 2014
This mandala took on a life of its own much more than the previous ones. No matter what I did, I couldn't make it work the way I wanted it to. After I made a decision to fill in some of the background with the shade of green called "hedgerow" (the green that had originally been only a thin border line), the pencil kept breaking off. In the far distant past, having a drawing feel like a failure could bring me to tears. Years later, I learned that when it seems as if a drawing or painting is "ruined," I can keep going with it, letting the "ruined" part lead the way. Below is an example of that phenomenon. "Self-Portrait with Brothers of Mercy and Night Falling From The Sky" was painted in gouache and watercolor in 1990 during the First Gulf War:
As I was working on this one, I left the room for a few minutes. When I returned, the wet paint in the sky had dripped down into the ocean and the wave. After a moment of shock, I went with what had happened and turned the drips into the bars of a cage or prison bars. The painting had a life of its own. This is the painting that my mother asked if she could buy. I offered to give it to her. She insisted on paying for it. When one of my father's brothers saw it on a visit from Minnesota, he said, "Your daughter is a philosopher." Unless I said something, it never occurred to anyone that it had not been my intention for there to be bars between the three people and the ocean, but when faced with that dripping paint, I made a decision to use it.
With Mandala #4, I felt that "hedgerow" had taken over the mandala and "ruined" it. Although "hedgerow" looked fine when used sparingly, I didn't at all like seeing so much of it. Suddenly it occurred to me to play with the colors using iPhoto, including seeing what the mandala would look like in black and white. When I arranged the black and white version with a version I preferred to the original version, I found that I liked the way that the three of them looked together. "Hedgerow" no longer looked so awful to me.
Still, I like the third version best.
Oboe remains noncommittal:
Saturday, October 4, 2014
Thursday, October 2, 2014
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Many years ago the thought came to me that we are all the same age -- all of us now and all of us who were ever born and all who will be born. We were just born at different times.
My first birthday:
Summer of 2014:
Working on mandala #4:
So happy just to be alive.