My sunflowers are drooping while I am trying not to.
I love getting flowers from the sale table at the grocery store. I can just stick them into some water, put them on the table and hope that someone stops by. This week we did have a friend come for a good visit over dinner. We miss that. It was the one thing that made a perfect ending to our Art Group meetings….dinner and conversation around the table. I would pick out funny, arty cocktail napkins, plan a mostly delicious meal, set the table with real cloth napkins that have been used by so many over as many years, and make the centerpiece for the table. We’d talk about politics, art, movies, books, trips…..whatever. And often when other friends were in town, they, too, would come for these Art Group dinners.
Other than one member of Art Group that stays in contact through facebook, I have not heard a word from the others. When something is over, it is really over. So when someone comes for dinner with Lee and I, it is so good to have a few minutes in the studio to talk about what we as artists and makers are doing now.
This week I spent several days preparing pages for a book that will open six different ways.
I am using Thai kozo paper for four of the smaller signatures and mulberry for the two larger signatures. Because both are so absorbent I had to gesso all sides. So two text blocks of sixteen folios each and four text blocks of eighteen folios each coated on all sides used up quite a bit of gesso. But now I can write, draw and/or paint on the pages without bleed. My friend from Canada who is an expert on Medieval bindings will come to the studio this week to show me how to put it all together.
I am contemplating on what to use for cover material…more later when I have it finished.
In the meantime I am really enjoying the drawing a day with Haiku. Here is the catch up on that.
The stones just sit there.
Taken away from their homes
they have gone silent.
Potters will always
sell their pieces that look back.
I know this because…..
I’m not a dancer.
But with these shoes on my feet
I can change my mind.
My pins and needles
wait for cloth, thread and my thoughts
to come together.
Ask if there are more
and the clerk will bring out all
the close relatives.
So now I have another page done on the flip side of the “relatives” and will post when I get further into the book.
I need to get back to the Hands of Responsibility sketchbook. Lee is losing a bit more of his capabilities since I last drew in it. He can not tell which way to turn the handle on the faucet to get hot water and I find him waiting and waiting for the water to heat up. This morning I fed the deer and birds for him as he gets confused as to where the cans of feed are in the garage.
On Friday we went to the salon where I get my hair done and he either gets a pedicure or full body massage. It was his massage day and he seems so relaxed and smiling when I go back to pick him up. The masseuse is wonderful with him because she says he reminds her of her grandfather. I am so lucky to have her do this for him.
My friend from far away suggested I ask around about getting someone to take him out for a bit…..she called it “rent a friend”. I may check on that this week. I keep saying that, but if I am the only one who can help him get words out, how is that going to work?
Our dear friend, Andy, who passed away suddenly a few weeks ago was the only one to think of doing this. He would come by to take Lee out to lunch after a hardware stop. He would take a good stab at what Lee would like to eat knowing that Lee can not read menus, and Lee would later try to tell me all about his time out. The other thing Andy did for us was go to Costco and get whatever we needed. He would let us know when he was coming to town and ask that we email him a list. But now we have used the last of those wonderful immense packages of toilet paper that come from there, the last Starbucks coffee beans, the last case of tomato sauce, the last lamb chops, the last four packs of butter sticks, the last, the last. We miss him and are getting over the sadness and onto smiling at memories.
His partner reads my poetry book and does find comfort there. Makes me glad I took the time to put that book together. I would also like some time to go back to the imaginary town of Oliver, North Carolina that is central to the novella I wrote that is on my website under its title, Kind Gestures. I feel I left some of those women with so much more to tell me….maybe later when more free time comes easily.
We will be just fine.