Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Your Wild & Precious Life

Here's a partial shot of a mixed media piece I posted a while back. I am adding some text to it but it's not finished yet. I thought it was, but then you know how it goes. What at first seems finished sometimes tells a different story on second or third glance. Life is like that, art is like that. It's a process, an ongoing one, always open to fine tuning. I was working on something else. Ideas were flying in every direction. A few of them hit this canvas. I'll post it again when the ideas have dried.

I was working in a looser way today, without the editor-me popping in every few minutes to say how she likes it. She is so annoying. Yet I am used to her bossy little visits (the devil you know) but I must say it was nice that she'd taken today off. Perhaps she will go awol. It was a pleasant morning. I was just doing what I wanted with no thought past that. Time passed, ideas flowed in and out. There was an intuitive sense of playing with stuff to see what worked, but no one suggesting I'd better be careful or I'd ruin the canvas. No soup nazi minding the alphabet paint soup.

There is another piece that's been hiding in the closet that needed something and today it became apparent. Ah for patience and a deep closet. I have succumbed to the idea of text, an idea I love but haven't used that much. It's all over me now like a half read newspaper. But the line I will use is "What will you do with this one wild and precious life?" It's a line from a Mary Oliver poem.

I found it in the strangest place and it burned a place in my brain like some printing plate. We were looking at house and kept bumping into Buddhist paraphernalia, Buddha statues, pictures of Tibetan teachers, a meditation cushion here, some dharma books there. And plunk over an art table was this lovely question: "What will you do with your one wild and precious life?" Sadly the house did not work out but I got to keep this lovely question to ponder, to add to my art and to share with you.

Gradually I am figuring out what to do with my one wild and precious life: live within touching distance of the natural world, make art, make friends, study the Dharma. It's taken a while and a few good swift kicks in the butt by life. But since I still have the boot mark, its never too far from my mind. And how about you, what's up with your one wild and precious life ?


  1. Many things but for now it is to enjoy a beautiful May indian wedding.......

  2. Thought provoking post and beautiful piece.
    I'm going to carry that line with me today and see what bubbles up and out...I'll be back!

  3. A lovely piece, without text...and one to look forward to with the addition.

    Mary Oliver as Dharma teacher works well.

    And that sumptuous query is so delicious.

    For me... embracing the surprise of two broken bones in my right, art making/writing wrist. Wild. And precious indeed...the body's ability to heal.

  4. Right now? one foot in front of the other... and tomorrow the same... and tomorrow.... just seeing where Life goes...hopefully mindfully... :)

  5. That sounds rather idyllic, Yoga Savy. I have a picture in my head of warm breezes and vibrant colours and wonderful fragrant cooking smells!

    Blue Sky Dreaming- Now with a name like that (and I know your blog) I suspect your one wild and precious life is filled with wonderful colourful art and deep imaginings.

    Merci 33 Now that is wild, 2 broken bone in that much used hand. Time to become ambidextrous? Or perhaps to percolate? And to see the upside -- the amazing healing powers of the body -- is truly a gift. May you discover many gifts in this one-armed time!

    MeAnderi- And that truly is it isn't it, one foot in front of the other! What could be better really? Mostly we forget to do this and go off on some tangent or get caught up in some delusion. A truly great aspiration for any of our wild and precious lives!

  6. yes, art is like life-- an on going process of ups and downs and making changes and trying harder next time - love your art work-

  7. Love Mary Oliver's work. Thanks for shining a light on this line of her poetry. Yes, this wild and precious life. Breathing in and breathing out... Hmmm-- what is THIS?!