“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


A Wild River Runs Through It

Third try's a charm, they say.

I keep putting this image out there,
keep putting it up,
keep talking about it
and then I walk away,
and it feels as if I've left a brick sitting on the page.

Could it be any heavier?

I talk about patterns and evolutions
and all of it is true
but I just can't get it to say what I feel,
this image with a life of its own,
the words that don't come easy,
and for me,
that is a clue, a hint,
a sign I should know to take seriously,
because the good ones always come easy for me.

And the problem is reading.

Truly it is.
It's why I don't visit museums a lot
when I'm painting,
why I avoid art magazines & books,
not wanting to influence my stuff,
and it's why I work with no music,
wanting only my rhythm on the canvas.

But this is reading,
and it works differently.
I begin to read new blogs,
and it's only blogs for some reason,
never books,
but I begin to read those blogs,
happy, happy to find them,
and my rhythm suddenly feels wrong,
moving with no grace,
and I should know, I should know,
to just stop, to stop,
to walk away,
to stop trying so hard,
but I push the words instead of letting them flow
and then I get up the next morning
and delete the post.

A pattern, you see,
though I hadn't until just now,
until typing those words,
and that's how it should work for me,
how it normally works for me,
for you it may be different,
but for me, that's it.
The ahas! just appear when I let them.

So I had talked about evolution,
about Darwin,
about survival of the fittest,
about changing one's spots,
about changing my spots,
about my own personal evolution,
about how the stripes on Maggie's tail
mirrored the stripes of water
on the leaf-stained concrete,
about patterns
and how we change them.
I'd talked about all that
but it didn't feel right.
I tried twice.

There's a lesson here somewhere.
I am, after all,
making my own map this year.
I must learn to let the river flow where it flows,
it lives in Mombasa anyway.
I will tear down the dam before the floods come,
and let it go.

So the map continues.
Two raccoons.
No dam.
A wild river.

So far I like it.
there are animals in the jungle


  1. yes


    of course


    you listen so well



  2. Yes, a charm
    an evolution

  3. I love to read your "listenings" and "knowings"

  4. i love this image, the earthy-ness, the flow, the warm colour. Your words are particularly meaningful to me today, about evolution and breaking old patterns and going with the flow.
    "two racoons. No Dam. A wild river." I like it too.

  5. your thoughts and ideas seem to be on the right path....

    and the raccoons just might be a symbol for something in your life....wondering is part of the fun and.....

    ummm...the cold can kill you...I'm sure of it ! or at least kill your ability to be outside enjoying winter...but hey, a warm up is coming wednesday...a whole 32 degrees...wow !

  6. I sometimes do the same thing, struggling to come up with the words for a post, to finally write it and then come back and delete it. It helps me to write my own post first, before visiting other blogs, that way I know the words are my own and not someone else's. I'm so glad to have found you. =)

  7. I like this almost controlled, purposeful composition of color - I like the stripes of brown and the black stripes on the tail. Organic stripes and animal stripes blending together- but there is something I can't explain in this photo - something I'm not quite sure I want to see, and yet I keep trying to see that thing that is hiding from me - or at least not showing its truthful self. I think there is some magic afoot here, and I don't quite know what I think about that.


  8. let 'er flow...we will either like it it or no..but evolution continuing, interest will follow..

  9. I must learn to let the river flow where it flows,
    it lives in Mombasa anyway.

    This is my favorite line. Maybe ever. You are a genius, flowing, halting, or however the wild river takes you.

  10. And so far I LOVE it! Your words are flowing just as beautifully as any river can from the depths of the soul.



  11. i want a wild river...i have few words you inspire me

  12. let that river flow. i wish mine would even trickle but still it does not.

  13. i know this about you. you know it about yourself. the importance of purity in your writing. that comparison thing is a killer of words isn't it? what you describe here is so like my own creative river. but it is scary that i must depend upon the muse because if the muse isn't up to using words i am out of luck for a post...and you will note my posts have been far and few between for sometime now.... i just don't know what i need in order to experience the ahas! right now.

  14. Wow...I love how she almost dissolves into her background in that image. She is like a chameleon.

    Debi, I so love your complicated ways...such a deep and thoughtful process you go through, and although I know it torments you at times, sometimes I think I am more drawn to your creative unfolding than I am to the actual words you put down here.
    No. I love them both the same. The true artist in you comes out in these beautiful strings of words and thought. With such honesty, we get to catch a glimpse of a very precious part of who you are.


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