Got the green light . Got the green light to continue.
The show is up, the dust is settling, my breath is slowing and relaxing a little. I’m reminded of that poem by Ryõkan:
The rain has stopped, the clouds have drifted away,
and the weather is clear again.
If your heart is pure, then all things in your world are pure.
Abandon this fleeting world, abandon yourself,
Then the moon and flowers will guide you along the Way.
Often, when one chapter’s closed and I don’t know What’s Next, I love to look around and notice what jumps, what naturally, effortlessly, sparks curiosity. Especially after dealing with the logistics of framing and promoting and recording — maybe a week’s gone by without much creative work, maybe two — it gets hard again, to enter the studio, the mystery of it. I feel a little out of practice.
So for well over a decade I’ve kept an Adventure Book. It’s a place to chronicle my wackiest creative ideas, annoying tasks, routine actions, moneymaking schemes. A notion strikes — no matter how mundane, no matter how majestic — and in it goes.
I took this suggestion from Carol Lloyd in her book Creating a Life Worth Living, and I carry it most always. There’s a beauty in writing all these ideas down: I’m not committing to them. I’ve more than enough ideas in the books to last me two years. As she puts it, the Adventure Book “engenders proactive dreaming rather than passive peeving.” It’s a record of my creative spurts and slumps, and serves as a catalyst … I can browse past ideas and discover which ideas still hold meaning years later, which I fulfilled easily, which fizzled maybe. Artists to explore, music to revisit, pie-in-the-sky dreams, wines, gift ideas, questions. I can see how I directed my energies, and have this enormous well of ideas I can draw on for inspiration, amusement, and action.
So as I return to work, I browse their pages with wonder. Noticing what continues to beckon.
get a pair of scissors that cut metal (a la Sandy Calder)
would a quince tree grow here? if so, plant one in backyard
do a little painting and give it to JT
I could listen to Bach minuets ALL DAY LONG
start a band with Mark
do a portrait of Martin Hayes
propose an exhibit at the downtown PL—small images inspired by the building—
expand my definition of myself.
This is also a moment for gratitude, to the Frenchman, to Linda, to the TurkeyLand Cove Foundation, to le petit garçon, to Andra and other partners in crime, to friends and family who’ve been guides and angels along the way. Gosh what luck, what good fortune, what gifts.
And so back to work, with wonder.
Faith Ringgold: American People Series #2: Woman Looking in a Mirror, 1966. Oil on canvas. Courtesy ACA Galleries