the way home songbox 2 copy

In mythic journeys, coming home, arriving back at the place where the adventure began, is sweet and sour. There is nothing better than returning home to comforts, patterns, and relationships that previously provided solid identity and definition. However, no one goes on an adventure without being changed by it. In other words, you arrive home but you are not the same person who left. Home didn’t change. You did.

Today, so far from home, navigating the dark woods and dark forces that come with every adventure, I especially appreciate Kerri’s gorgeous composition THE WAY HOME. It reminds me that the gift of the adventure is to open my eyes, to feel and revel in the ocean’s spray as we sail toward the edges of the earth.  The dark woods, the unknowns, the trials and tribulations, are, after all, the transformers. They are the agents of change. To step beyond a comfort zone, to seek adventure, is to invite…discomfort (I know, a no-duh).

In our uncharted waters I am, on this day, most grateful for my wife’s captivating and inspiring reminder that, even this shaky-ground-discomfort, is a solid step on THE WAY HOME.

 

THE WAY HOME on the album THIS PART OF THE JOURNEY is available on iTunes & CDBaby

 

read Kerri’s blog post about THE WAY HOME

 

 

arches shadows k&d website box copy

the way home/this part of the journey ©️ 2000 kerri sherwood

Meet Your Graces [on DR Thursday]

ThreeGraces copy

Brightness. Joyfulness. Bloom. Or, charm. beauty, and creativity. They have many names, these Graces. Also known as the Charities. They are also known as Zeus’  daughters.

Sun. Joy. Bloom. At the end of Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, is a monologue. Emily, saying goodbye to her life (she has already died), revels in the beauty of life that we simply do not appreciate. The smell of grass. The sound of leaves rustling. Morning coffee. Stretching your legs. “Oh, earth,” she says, “You are too beautiful…” To the Greeks, in that final moment, Emily is being visited by a Grace.

These posts often take me down rabbit holes. Here’s today’s surprise: I bumbled into a bit of research on Buckminster Fuller, one of the great minds of the 20th Century. I learned that, as a young man, he was deeply depressed and was considering suicide. In a crucial moment, he had an experience. In the midst of his despair he was lifted into a ball of light and very clearly heard, “You belong to the universe. Your significance will remain forever obscure to you but you may assume that you are fulfilling your role if you apply yourself to converting your experiences to the highest advantage of others.”

Convert your experiences to the highest advantage of others. A visit by the Graces. Creativity is divinely given. You belong to the universe. What else?

 

ThreeGraces copy

three graces,, 32 x 56IN, acrylic

 

read Kerri’s blog post about THE THREE GRACES

 

HH coffee cups website box copy

 

threegracescopyright2012davidrobinson

 

Pollinate [on Not So Flawed Wednesday]

bee and thistle copy

“The Bee and Thistle sounds like a bar!” I quipped as Kerri knelt to take the shot. And, as we later discovered, it is! It is many bars! Pollination meets inebriation. Poetry or symbol or both. I can’t help but imagining little bees flitting from tap to tap, bees with beer bellies. Belching bees.

The US Department of Agriculture reports that pollinators are responsible for one in every three bites of food we take. Flowering crops need those pollen-drunk bees flitting about to fertilize the plants. Without them, the whole system breaks down. Such a little thing. Such a necessary thing. Bees are in decline.

It seems the theme emerging from this week’s studio melange is the power of the small thing, the small gesture, the small act of kindness, the small bee. The little things taken for granted that go largely unnoticed until they are gone. And then the loss is titanic.

Austin wants to keep bees. Well, truth be told, he already has a small number of hives. A few days ago he received some queen bees in the mail. He ordered them on Amazon [if you doubt that we live in a remarkably strange time, reread that last sentence]. One of his queens escaped from her little matchbox mailer and when Austin opened the package the queen flew away. She apparently had other plans.

He told me the story of the queen’s escape and I knew exactly where he could find his fleeing bee. “She’s in a bar,” I suggested. “The Bee & Thistle.”

Austin wrinkled his nose and then laughed, “I guess I’ll have to order another queen and request one without a drinking problem.”

 

read Kerri’s blog post on BEES AND THISTLES

 

 

handshadowstones website box copy

Make A Small Gesture [on Two Artists Tuesday]

small gestures copy

We’ve built our towering life together on the small gesture. Coffee in bed. A note stashed in a suitcase to be found when far away from home. We hold hands everywhere we go. When getting ready for bed, the first one in the bathroom always puts toothpaste on both brushes. Little kindnesses. The smallest of signals and courtesies that say nothing more and nothing less than, “You matter most of all.”

Looking for the grand plan that will change the world or, better, trying to be the grand plan, often blinds us to the real necessity of the moment. We look for the mountain that needs to be moved and miss the hand that needs to be held.

My younger, revolutionary self screams, “WHAT?! WE NEED TO PUSH BACK! WE NEED TO FIGHT THE SYSTEM!! WE NEED TO CHANGE THE WORLD!!! THIS SMALL-MOMENT STUFF IS THE CRAP-THINKING OF AN OLD PERSON! WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU?!!!!

I’ve been more changed by a smile from across the room than by all the agitation that I’ve engendered across the span of my life. I have initiated more change by holding my tongue than by wagging it. Listening, I’ve learned, is a most powerful small gesture.

If I am old (I don’t feel old), if I have learned anything, then I have learned that real love is not noisy or flashy or grand. It is quiet. It steps behind you when you are frightened, puts its hand on your back and whispers, “I’ve made you a toothbrush.”

 

read Kerri’s blog post about SMALL GESTURES

 

cropped head kiss website copy

UpLift [on Merely A Thought Monday]

cohesion copy

And, what is the opposite of cohesion? Incoherence. The lack of clarity or unity. Fracture.

For a period of time my work on this earth was essentially a meditation on power. Power with. Power over. After a while I understood that power-over was not really power at all; it was control. Control and power are two very different things. They are often confused.

Power is something created with others. Control is something done to others. The equation is simple: the more controlling a person is, the less powerful they actually are. A person who understands his/herself as powerful has no need to assert control over others.

A leader invested in control has only one sure route to controlling: to fracture. To divide. It is the way of the truly powerless. Incoherence and chaos are great tools if control is the aim. Destroy the unity. Play to the disgruntled. Feed the fire of those who are feeling powerless. Promise them control. Pushing others down to elevate the self can only end badly. Everyone drowns.

People secure in their power create cohesion. They unite. They uplift. Power is a force that grows between people. It cannot be owned by one. It is always the province of the community. A person secure in her/his power generates unity. What else? The power they feel within is an expression of the power they experience with.

Community is a word that implies cohesion. To commune. Common. And, what could be more common than a central focus, the intention to support and bring out the best in all.

What is the opposite of a powerful person?

 

read kerri’s blog post about COHESION

 

alice's restaurant, california websitebox copy

 

 

 

Taste The Dream [on KS Friday]

each new day songbox copy

I just finished reading The Hundred Year House by Rebecca Makkai. There is an image in the book that I adore. A fish dreaming of a root beer float. In fact, the root beer float is the fish’s greatest dream, a seemingly impossible one to achieve. A little girl offers a solution. The fish should be in the root beer float, eating the dream from the inside.

Living inside the dream rather than chasing it. Language matters. Dreams are notoriously ethereal, very difficult to grasp. Impossible to chase. Wrap your fingers around a dream and it changes shape.

But, to stand within the dream, to live inside it, savoring each moment lived as a bite from life. A taste of the dream. No chase necessary. A fish in a root beer float. Each new day a bite to be relished. Each new day a taste of the dream.

 

EACH NEW DAY on the album RIGHT NOW is available on iTunes & CDBaby

 

read Kerri’s blog post about EACH NEW DAY

 

vailKdotDdot website box copy

 

each new day/right now ©️ 2010 kerri sherwood

Note The Milestone [on DR Thursday]

David RobinsonYoga Series 7 - Version 2

Some paintings are milestones, markers of change. This is one of those paintings.

And, although I recognized it as a marker, I had no idea what to call it. Since it was the seventh in a new series of experiments that I called ‘yoga’ paintings, I cleverly named this piece Yoga Series #7. A catchy title, don’t you think?

It became the lead image on my website. It was the banner image on my society6.com store. It was the image that identified this blog site for a few years.

I painted it a full two years before I met Kerri. Early in our lives together, I showed her my paintings, this painting. She asked me what I called it and I told her. #7. Sometimes my wife looks at me like I’m an idiot. Actually, she stares at me with a searing look of utter incomprehension. Her thought bubble carries a single word, “dullard.” This was the first time I experienced “the look.”

“That just won’t do.” she said. “It’s your icon. I think you should call it Iconic.”

Not only was it the first time I experienced “the look,” it was also the first time I received “the correction.”

“Iconic,” I said, pretending to try it on for size, feigning that the decision was mine alone to make and secretly loving that the decision was now – and forever – a joint affair. The moment was iconic.

“I like it,” I said.

David RobinsonYoga Series 7 - Version 2

iconic, 54 x 54IN, mixed media

 

read Kerri’s blog post about ICONIC

 

 

BootsWeddingBoots website box copy

 

iconic ©️ 2010 david robinson