A final contemplative thought as Holy Week comes to a close
“I am a northern guy. I have lived the whole of my life in the north west of England. I feel northern. It is in my accent. It is in my attitude. It is in my preferences: my favorite season is winter…”
Thus begins Andrew James Murray in the Forward of his new collection of poems, Heading North.
This idea of ‘northern-ness’ in a non-American context intrigued me.
A mere 35 miles west of Manchester where Andrew resides lies the infamous town of Liverpool. I never thought of The Beatles as being ‘northern’.
And yet, thinking on this further, it begins to fall into place – this marriage of blue-collar work ethic to the arts and education; a gritty, earthy element evident in both (he)artists’ life-work.
Damp, dark mists surround day-to-day living in the North, where cold light slants in mysterious angles. This is where Andrew draws inspiration. Continue reading
As hubby and I drove the last few yards towards our driveway coming home from an outing the other day, the soundless swoosh of a hawk made its dramatic landing by the side of the road. Just as suddenly, it took flight to who-knows-where.
In those few moments, the raw heft of this bird of prey left a palpable presence. Bringing to mind my friend Anna’s novel, The Hawk.
I’ve been reading it on Smashwords, where she has self-published many of her other novels. I respect the fact that as a creative (he)artist, she does the work necessary to get her work out there for others to enjoy.
She believes her novels are examples of faith in action. As she says: “And this is where faith comes into the process; it’s trusting your instincts as a creative force to just let the words, or whatever artistic tools you choose, go where they will.”
Thank you Anna for that reminder. Continue reading
HAPPY (GRAND)MOTHER’S DAY
(Welcome Home: A Tiny House, Huge Purpose)
LA, the City of Angels…
…at least one angel, shown here caring for his neighbor…
“A SUITCASE FULL OF CHOCOLATE” is the film about the life of SOFIA COSMA (1914-2011), a devoted mother, a modest woman of great personal character, a great pianist, and the ultimate survivor. Born at the outbreak of World War I, this remarkable musician began a brilliant career as a prize winner in the Viennese International Piano Competition of 1933. Hitler’s invasion of Austria, and Sofia’s subsequent long imprisonment in a Soviet Labor camp, forced her to abandon her music for many years. This is the remarkable story of her ultimate triumph as a mother, a concert artist in the Communist world, then an American citizen with a new life, and a free woman, who returned to Russia to solo with the Moscow Philharmonic. The life of Sofia Cosma is a lesson about Freedom, that precious commodity which most of us take for granted. It is also a lesson about artistry, not fame. Through unbelievable adversity, this musician made music at the highest level, cared for her family, kept her sense of humor, and remained genuinely modest throughout her life.” Lincoln Mayorga
I don’t remember how I came across this intriguingly titled video trailer, but if not for the name, I know I’d have missed it altogether. I’m glad the chocolate drew me in…Once drawn in, I still haven’t a clue as to what the chocolate connection actually is, but, that’s part of the continuity of the draw for when the video becomes more widely available to a larger audience. I suspect it has something to do with Sofia’s eventual escape from the Communist world, but that is of course simply my own speculation.
“In an age when we make heroes out of musicians who struggle with drugs, it is rare to encounter one whose life is profoundly inspiring.” ~ Lincoln Mayorga
Okay. So I’m laid up a bit from a pesky back muscle spasm. In my mature wisdom, I know it is nothing as incapacitating as what many of my favorite Wounded Warriors have had to endure in a life less than half the length of my own. But, when one is on a roll with a project that has been working its way to the top of the slush pile of my creative mind, the intrusion of this mini-disability is an aggravation.
In keeping with a term I earned back during my horse rescue days, I choose to ‘Cowgirl Up.’
Yep, being (he)artistic and horsey walk hand in hand in this lady’s life.
I confess to times of grumpiness, but mostly I’ve been reading lots, listening lots and vegging lots. Never one to run from the creative crock pot of silence, the waiting is invigorating, but the physical stillness is my undoing!
Here then is a sampling of stuff I love, especially when I can’t position myself on my own practice stool and work on my own music. Enjoy! Continue reading
Each day is new; we all know this.
The feeling of promise kisses each of us upon first awakening; however fleeting.
Before the Realities of Life sift back into our consciousness, this is how it all begins.
Thou dost make the dawn and the sunset shout for joy.
Psalms 65: 86
I caught this re-broadcast segment on 60 minutes last night after returning from our 4015-plus mile road trip to visit Dad and be with Family. Because Dad fought in WWII, I offer this video in honor of the spirit in which it was fought…because he is my dad, I offer it in honor of what it means to be Family.
“You may say I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us and the world will be as one.” John Lennon
That gaze is arresting; so peaceful yet focused and in the moment. What a glorious creation; breathed forth into existence by the imagination of my Lord.
Reaching out to me from the image; that gaze. The earthy balance of body, pattern and color palette; eye – candy ‘au naturale.’ It fills me.
The glow of the glimmering candles cast orange upon my workspace. Against a grey backdrop day, I am surrounded by supportive stuff; bits of inspiration, all within view of that gaze.