when words fail me, which is often, I paint. When words work for me and are available on time, I am surprised.

Saturday, January 20, 2007


The cell phone reception at our house is terrible. Tate couldn't hear the message from his most recently dismissed employee.
"I can call your messages from the home phone."
I dialed, entered his passcode and then handed the phone over so he could hear. After he hung up the phone he said, "So, what's the passcode on your telephone?"
He was making a statement. He was insinuating that I kept tabs on his personal interactions and that he didn't have the same privilege when it came to his ability to monitor my private life, as if there was such a thing, a private life that is.
I loved it, before he spit the entire question out, I was gloating.
"(_ _ _ _)"I said with the most pious expression.
"My birthday?"
I smiled.
He hung his head and shuffled out of the room. Humbled.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Truth

We watched the movie, "Cold Mountain" the other night. I had seen it before but I never remember anything about a movie after about an hour has passed since it ended. The old lady hermit says, "Birds got a job, shits got a job, seeds got a job and you got a job."
I do too, three or four of them really and I wish I could write as well as you serious writer bloggers and poets but I can barely remember my alpha bet these days. I read an article in Newsweek magazine this week. It's on menopause. That great unknown of women's health. I am terrified of this "journey" into cronehood. My first boyfriend's mother never got through it, she went nuts, literally. He told me nearly 20 years later, that she ended up being institutionalized. She entered the menopause threshold and never came back. This has haunted me every sweat filled night for the past four years.Newsweek says that menopause leads to verbal memory loss. This statement stuck a nerve with me. On certain days of the month I compose works of literature in my head that impress the heck out of me, other days I can't remember the word for anything. I speak like a deaf person, mostly with my hands. I think in pictures.It's. . . mmmn. . .like this---------Mrs. Munch Finds out the Truth

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Kramer Cure

It's been eight weeks since Kramer came to live with us. It's been eight weeks since I've had one continuous thought; hey, that's a familiar experience. . . when did I feel like this before? What was I thinking? I thought I had empty nest syndrome.That must be what it is when you find tears in your eyes every time some acquaintance asks you how your sons are doing, even though the answer is "fantastic." I still cry. I think about all those times I was impatient for them to grow up, when I was tired, when I was afraid, when I was lonely. Empty nest, I realized early on, wasn't about feeling lonely, but about regret. Regret with a capital R. Regret that I didn't cherish every fleeting second that went as they were growing up. Somewhere over the past four years, I got the idea that a little companion dog would be a cure for this deep feeling of loss. I kept seeing older women running around town with little dogs tucked into their arms and I didn't think they were nauseating as I did a few years ago. I empathised. They had found a cure for their empty nest syndrome. It seemed logical, a puppy is warm and cute and snugly and small, why not?
Tate's birthday, two months ago, I bought him a puppy.
Yes, I bought him for Tate, he attached himself to me immediately, I had nothing to do with it, I swear. It wasn't the fact that I had little doggie treats in my coat pocket when I went to pick him up at the airport. It wasn't that I talked Tate into driving to the airport so I could hold the puppy all the way home in my arms. No, not that. It wasn't the fact that I took him everywhere I went for the first 3 weeks because I didn't know what else to do with him.
Whatever it was, it got old really fast.
"Stop it" is about the only thing I say anymore. He follows me everywhere, always under my feet. He jumps on me when his feet are dirty. He tries to get the cat to play with him and it's really loud and chaotic when he does this. He won't go out into the grass and play unless I am standing there, even when it is twenty degrees outside. When I make the bed, he jumps in it, if I try to think one thought, he commandeers it. When I go to the bathroom he follows me and if I lock him out he stands at the door and cries!!!!!!
I AM ABSOLUTELY CURED! EMPTY NEST SYNDROME OVER. I remember, I remember, I remember.

Laughing Out Loud

I received this email from my favorite living writer, Rick Prose. I'm not afraid to post it, no one hardly reads my blogs anyway. Rick is the manager of the local access public t.v. station in Boothbay Maine(BRCTV). He's amazing. I am including a link to his web site.
He wrote:all that red sand, those rocks, the cactus. the whole time i lived in the southwest, i kept coming upon the beach, but never found the ocean. i'm hopeless at finding things, i guess...peace, contentment, purpose, true love. (this is in response to the canyon painting, which i think is really beautiful, pal).
i got the name of the salon, an allusion to the recently popular book "running with scissors," i guess, but i think it's too subtle and too literary for virginians. if it's not too late to have the sign re-painted, i'd like to offer my top three names for tonsorial/stylistic establishments, which i think might be more appropriate for the southern rural clientele.
1: O'Hair International (for this one i always imagined that the proprietress would have a greeter in orange robes, sort of a Hairy Krishna-type, but that may also be too subtle)
2: Sheer Boredom. no magazines, no TV, no music - no real style, to speak of - just the same haircut given by the same matron with the same snappy patter ('f you'd wash yer har more often, you'd not get them sores on yer scalp)
3: Cut'n'Run. the styling salon for wimpy liberal democrats who want america to lose the war and let a bunch of illegal alien lesbian stem cell researching abortionists take prayer out of the schools, again!
actually, that last one is more of a topical favorite that may not stand the test of time the way, say, "shear madness" has, but i like it, and everyone else should, too.
i just typed this whole thing as a comment on your blog, then realized you might not want me ranting in public with your name attached to said ranting, so here it is.
i also loved the jesus picture and the rabbi's story reminded me of the story you told me once that you thought would make a good kid's book, i think it had something to do with fish, but i sometimes forget to button my fly, so who am i to think i remember things?
going to new orleans this weekend, to try and get something happening on rebuilding a house for some people i met when i was there. i'm a hopeless romantic goof, and not many people appreciate that, i fear.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Canyon Kiss

This is my new years painting. The critics have been cold and warm, but it pleases me alot and that's all that matters.

Monday, January 01, 2007


"There's alot going on underground . . ." (Tom Waits)
Tate went to his sister's house in southern Va. for the New Year holiday. Even though I love going to Abingdon and being with Tate, I opted to stay home to get some work done in his office. End of the year organizing and taxes have to be done sometime and time is getting a bit scarce now. I took advantage of my aloneness yesterday; I taught myself the Hebrew aleph-Bet while taking a 4 hour bath. I read my emails and looked at friend's Blogs. I procrastinated getting a canvas out of the basement. It's weird, the hesitation and the fear before I get settled in to a canvas. What is it that would make me, who loves to paint, always hesitate to sit down at the easel? Finally set up, but inspiration was hard to come by. I pulled out some photo albums, looking for one of those photos I take for future painting subjects. I don't feel like painting the dog, who is the only available model. No, no self portrait today, maybe later. Then, I remember this photo I saved from a power point presentation given by Henry Reed.

Shamanism and Water
A presentation by Henry Reed
(I am having difficulty getting this to link,sorry)

"Water and shamanism have much in common. In this slide show, presented at the annual Schwartz Report Conference at A.R.E. on the theme of the Secret Life of Water, Henry explores the various shamanic activities water invites."

I really love Henry's work.
I stared at this photo for a few minutes, I entered the cave and went underground as Henry has taught me. I proceeded to paint for six or seven hours.Thank you Henry for being an inspirational guide.