Still At It

Okay, here we are again. So many days gone by since my last post. But none of them wasted. The other day while walking to tai chi I noticed how the fog could not bear to leave the cold ground. Somehow unable to move on.  Why not? More sun was needed…more warmth pulled it away. I suppose it is like that for some people…not wanting to let go… I have not been like that. Hunkering down in the past is not helping me to see what is coming, or worse, not letting me focus on the nows of my life.  And I am a bit fond of the nows.

After tai chi the fog had let go and the scene not near so evocative.

Remember these dining room chairs? The ones with the carved face of the Greenman in their backs? Well, they creaked and moaned, probably for years. But one gets used to certain noises over time. But this past Christmas, their continually whining and sounds of indigestion became a bit more than tedious. So when I couldn’t contact the fellow who refinished this table before I moved, I asked a woodworker in the poetry group.

And away they went that very afternoon. Wonderful!

I thought it a good idea to have them gone because I kept thinking that any minute the flooring men would come and start ripping up the flooring…in every single room and closet! But those chairs will be back in place before that happens.

I am not looking forward to the disruption of having everything that sits on the floor being emptied and moved as floor sections are removed and new boards put down plus shoe moulding. Spell check does not like that spelling of :moulding”. There are so few opportunities to pick the correct but not commonly used word, that it feels good to use the spelling that nosey perfectionist disapproves of.

Anyway, it is not the builder’s fault, not the floorman’s fault, but the product itself. Only having hardwood floors before, I was prepared to have something less than ideal with flooring on a slab of concrete. But not something this bad. There is no point in fussing over it. So what! I get to stay in my house while it is being done. Empty shelves and cabinets so the furniture can be moved, etc. Then of course put it all back in as soon as the new floor is laid in that section and the piece of furniture put back. My neighbor told me his took less than four full days. Using his place as a guide, I am figuring on six at least. The den with all those book shelves and books wedged into a very tight space will be a nightmare…but then so will my studio, bedroom, laundry room, and closet with Migun bed and file cabinet, and shelving units along the floor. But we will manage.

I am thinking that when the weather gets a bit warmer, I will sort out the garage. Get cabinets with doors and shelves and make decisions on what needs hanging onto. The rest off to good homes. With so much from my old studio still being in cartons and much already given away, I think I have already made those decisions.

At the poetry meeting I read “Social Distance”, a poem written during Covid times. We all need a reminder that it is not really over, yet. I passed out my copies and read from my artist book.

They’d never seen books shaped around the content of words and meaning. They asked if I could teach them how to make books around their poems. I said, “No.” My teaching days are done. Then could I teach a class on condensed poetry.  Same answer, “No.”  We all have a way of saying something that matters. We communicate in the best way we can. Like artwork, words and the form they take in poetry is unique to each of us. My way won’t work for those who study and work out the many forms poetry can take. I just have a feeling and respond to it with words placed on a page in a way to be understood while catching our breath.

My quick and negative response to their questions made me remember what my art teachers in under graduate school said after searching for the right words. “Sandy, we want to um, uh, thank you for your brevity.” At the time I did not know if it was a good thing, or bad. Twenty-five years later, I am sure it is what I always suspected….a good thing.

I am going through the twenty illustrations I have so far for Scrabble’s story and making them larger…about double in size. I recut paper and now feel I have enough space to get the characters inter-acting. At least so far….

Ten more to go and I can get back to the story where I left off.

Speaking of stories…I am reworking the short story about Joey the librarian. My writing about him seems best done at the bar over a Manhattan and wood-fired pizza. This one particularly good with gorgonzola and prosciutto.

Seems a glass of wine is in order.

Friends are coming down from Asheville area to visit and have lunch this coming week. They were so good at checking in on Lee and me during the hard times.  I am remembering all the Australian friends who kept in touch during those years and will have a Yellow Tail Chardonnay and say “thank you for being there.”

Monday I want to walk the river in Murphy between dental appointment and trip to Rare Bird and Lowes hardware. The flooring man will come when I get home to rip up a section of flooring to see how things are under the curling. Told my builder it was like walking on potato chips. So he came over to have a look and a glass of wine. He reminds me of the builders Lee and I had in Michigan and some of the ones here. Easy going and sympathetic in all the right places.

Til later….