Sorting Through the Paint Bag

Tonight I sorted through the paint bag that lives in the car. I was trying to make a lighter bag, because you know it’s hard to haul all that stuff up hills etc. I was a little amazed (and embarrassed) to find out that I had 20+ tubes of paint in there. I took a side trip to the APP store and found an app that lets me scan barcodes and add it to an inventory sort of list. Sorta cool, a little flakey, but learning curve.

This is the current state of my little travel palette.

Your basics: Sepia, Burnt Sienna, Hooker’s Green, Green Gold, Cobalt Blue, Sap Green, French Ultramarine, Quinacridone Red (I think), Mayan Yellow.

I usually have a little indigo or paynes gray on the side, along with some light red. Right now there’s some yellow ochre. Go figure.

New though, I signed up for a week-long plein air watercolor class from IS183 in June. How exciting!

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Keeping Up the Fight

‘Despair, or folly?’ said Gandalf. ‘It is not despair, for despair is only for those who see the end beyond all doubt. We do not. It is wisdom to recognize necessity, when all other courses have been weighed, though as folly it may appear to those who cling to false hope. Well, let folly be our cloak, a veil before the eyes of the Enemy! For he is very wise, and weighs all things to a nicety in the scales of his malice. But the only measure that he knows is desire, desire for power; and so he judges all hearts. Into his heart the thought will not enter that any will refuse it, that having the Ring we may seek to destroy it. If we seek this, we shall put him out of reckoning.’

‘At least for a while,’ said Elrond. ‘The road must be trod, but it will be very hard. And neither strength nor wisdom will carry us far upon it. This quest may be attempted by the weak with as much hope as the strong. Yet such is oft the course of deeds that move the wheels of the world: small hands do them because they must, while the eyes of the great are elsewhere.
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings)

Please note that I’m deep into the audio version of Fellowship of the Ring at the moment. I wonder if I’ll ever stop weeping when Gandalf falls into the depths with the Balrog on the bridge of Khazad-dûm. Although I am not of this level of readers, I love that there are such people in the world as these, who discuss many things.

May Day, 2018

Happy May Day! I took myself on a little vacation from writing today, after writing a poem each day for all of April.

It was warm and mostly sunny and I had reserved a spot in a rare books something at the Clark. They’d sent a reminder email and I was thankful and I’m so glad I went. Besides hearing about the library and its collection and how to access it, we heard about an interesting array of “childrens” books – and passed them around the table to look at! There was much surprise expressed about this. I think we all expected either to be just shown the books or to wear gloves. One of the books was from the late 1600’s – considered to be the first known instance of the idea of Mother Goose – from France! It had been rebound by Mr. Sterling and was beautiful, as were many of the selection – beautiful marbled endpapers, beautiful illustrations and typography. A man who sat near me taught me how to look for the bookbinder’s signature. A good and welcome new skill.

I went with a bit of time ahead of it to do a little painting, of course and it was a pleasure to sit outside in the warm sun.

Day Thirty, NaPoWriMo

It’s good to jot down words:
a line of conversation,
two words or three that
appear on the windshield
during the drive to work
good to capture them in
the dailyness of life
snatching them from
wherever words and ideas go
when they decide you’ve
ignored them too long
or aren’t paying attention.
Listening and looking for them,
muse-like they appear regularly
and, having paper and pen
at the ready, they stay.
The day to day after day
of describing and remembering
is an adventure without
known destination. The road
turns or brinks a hill
and there you are watching
birds boiling up on
paper-scrap wings to
a sky yet unseen.

Thank you to all my April NaPoWriMo visitors, readers and commentators. Hope you had a great month and thanks for sharing my thirty newly written poems!

Day Twenty-nine, NaPoWriMo

I can tell I’ve been listening to the lays of Bilbo.

Here, small works,
the labor of the world,
are known, that day by day
we hurry through
both chores and song
and lightly running
pass down one path
then next and next
penultimate unknown
a day is reached
and then the last
how many paths til
that rest place found
Neither knowing nor telling
the days lead on.
Sit! Stay then,
telling tales and singing
here where life lies
and sweet work of living
guessing what may be
past the hill’s edge
there where the clouds fly

This morning Mom and I went to visit the Cohoes Falls and then breakfast and then some pokemoning.

Day 28, NaPoWriMo

I’m off topic from my own prompts today…

So alike, mother and daughter,
that as the mother scolds her
for sins of inattention and
fidgeting and whining
and perhaps a tantrumI
I can easily imagine the
little girl, using the
same words and tone
to upbraid her mother
you can’t always have
your own way, she’d say,
you won’t get it by pouting,
as she holds out a spoonful
of applesauce to the elder lips
which tremble at the mere
possibility of no.
And so it goes on, her
fidgeting and whining
the mother scolding and
distractedly fixing
her daughter’s earring
until they both focus on
something else in the
food court and leave
on a singular mission
of fulfilling desires.

Day Twenty-seven, NaPoWriMo

Jumped? No.
Not at all.
Falling? Not exactly.
Allowed myself to fall?
Gave myself willingly
to the spring surge,
the tidal pull?
More than likely.
Look the wrong way
and it plows down
and sweeps you away
unexpected.
Not necessarily
surprised but still…
Turn upstream and see
that last bit of ice
that dark wave of
night-long rain coming
Be ready to lift
your joyous feet.

Cohoes Falls, today.