we are this close to this year's harvest moon.
i have no image.
i have no image.
the internet this morning was full of discussions about art and not-art and filled me with thoughts as big as that almost-here moon. the studio part of my living room is swallowing the entire space, paintings and partial paintings everywhere, words taped to the poles that hold up the ceiling. the couch moves closer and closer to the front glass door, closer to being outside, shuffling in small secret steps. the birdsong is louder, the squirrels closer, the falling pecans bouncing through the open door almost onto my toes. it begins to feel like my true home.
i am painting both canvas and furniture and still clearing clutter, every weekend narrowing it down a bit further, this weekend distracted by a newly found notebook of my mother's. at one point she'd written about animals she'd lived with, and there is this bit:
"Another time, another tender moment I remember, is when I raised Reggie, a blue jay.
The very last time I held him, a tail feather released,
falling to my feet as he soared from my protective hands."
feathers. talismans for her also. signs. of course.
i am so her daughter.
she drew blueprints for houses her entire life. as a child i would sit at the kitchen table with her and watch her design this week's house of dreams. she must have drawn hundreds and not a one saved. i was always enchanted by the possibility of such a small drawing, and, at an early age, began to draw my own blueprints, so different from hers. hers were adult homes, with bathrooms where you expected them to be and bedrooms all over here or all over there, but mine were always spaces, open spaces with wide stairways, my bed always at the bottom of a staircase, the stairs themselves night tables and bookshelves. i remember drawing the books stacked helter skelter on this stair or that, and vases of flowers on the floors. the kitchen would be another staircase somewhere else in the space. the front door was far away. it was my nest.
though my real front door is ever so close, my home is still not an adult home, and quickly becoming even less so. it is becoming a studio and i am letting it draw its own map, letting it tell me what it wants. it whispers the word fun. it tells me the bedroom will be sanctuary. it tells me to let go of old paperbacks, their type so small i can't read them anyway. it tells me i need at least 2 more chairs for the tables.
when i am an old woman i will not wear purple. i will wear gray or white tshirts splattered with paint, and pajama bottoms or jeans. i can feel it in my bones, fast coming down the tracks. old is not that far away. it's not what i'd expected, it's not what i thought it would be like, to be not rich and older, to be still learning, to be still struggling, to no way no how be able to retire and relax. in truth, it feels quite terrifying, but it feels very much meant-to-be. it feels like home - there are no stairs, unless you count the ones that curve up to katie's place - but it feels like the blueprints i used to draw, up and down and books and flowers and certainly not all grown up boring. the kitchen is back behind me somewhere, but i forgot to draw a stove.