This poem was written by Adrian Thirkell in 2018, after Adrian came across my Japanese Cherry Blossom painting online. I’ve never met Adrian, yet he offered his art freely, and kindly agreed I could share it with you. His offer slipped my mind, until I got one of those ‘One year ago’ memory jogger thingies from Facebook yesterday. Finally, a year after it was written, and coincidentally on the Spring Equinox of 2019 – here it is.
The morning tree is hung, profuse, in blossom. Speaks from every budding flower Of how, notwithstanding that a vial of poison May leech us of our love, turn all things sour, We may find ourselves again renewed, And from each cast of air strewn light Absorb upon the skin, then through and through, The means to our own blossoming, and free of blight. And then we wake to more transcendent mood; Each bloom, unfettered, calls the spirit up. To speak, we make emollients of every word And every touch distills the petals’ sap.
If you would like to own a copy of the picture which inspired the poem, it is available on Etsy as a signed numbered limited edition A4 print, as an A5 print, and as a greeting card. Thanks in advance for your support.
I’m in Minden, a fascinating historic town in the North Rhine Westphalia region of Germany. The main reason for my visit is to take part in an art exhibition as part of a cultural festival celebrating the relationships Minden has with its twin towns, one of which is Sutton. I’ve been made to feel very welcome here – and I’m enjoying being a tourist, wandering around town appreciating the history, which sits alongside more contemporary aspects of the place.
While I’ve been here, the political shambles in the UK has continued to unravel, and the people I speak with In Minden are completely bemused as to why we are trying to leave the EU. I don’t have any answers for them. Something I have noticed and am continuing to notice, is how often people who voted to leave, factor narrative around the first and second world wars into their rationale. It’s depressing.
I’m bringing this up now, because Minden was a prisoner of war camp in WWI, and suffered heavy bombing from US forces in WWII. These things are parts of our history, they’ve happened, they cannot be changed, and we learn from them. What we shouldn’t do is colour everything else we know and experience about something, based on awful events which happened many decades ago.
The exhibition preview is in a few short hours, so I’m off to get ready for that. Until I write again, I’ll leave you with a new piece of art titled ‘Arohanui’, a Maori word meaning, much love, with deep affection.
It’s been a choppy week with more than its fair share of anxiety and stress. Fortunately, I’ve got better at spotting the signs, and learning to move with the flow, rather than resist. In turn, this has meant I’ve also been able to enjoy a lot of what is going on around here this week too. Things like…
On Monday I gave two career talks to local school kids. We talked about art, travel, hard work, ups and downs, and more. We shared lots of questions about what’s good, what’s not so good. I appreciate how younger minds, yet to be corporatised often seem more willing to just ask clear questions, getting straight to the point. And there’s a friendliness in the exchanges too.
On Tuesday I had some great business development conversations, and ran a community art class. Wednesday was also primarily about business development, and Thursday contained a lovely joyful moment of handing over a finished art work to its new custodians.
The week is drawing to a close, and the next opportunity approaches. This is the 150th consecutive week of the We Are All Artists free art project. Almost three years ago I started hiding art, and where this project has taken us since, never ceases to amaze me.
I’ve decided to hide this guardian to celebrate the milestone. I painted this a while back, and I’ve been waiting for the right moment to do something with it. ‘In The Fullness of Time’ will be hidden some time over the weekend. Thanks to everyone who supports the project, I appreciate it very much.