What I Need

Grandma'sBoxofPastels

en·chant
inˈCHant,enˈCHant/
verb
(1)fill (someone) with great delight; charm.

synonyms: captivate, charm, delight, enrapture, entrance, enthrall, beguile, bewitch, spellbind, fascinate, hypnotize, mesmerize, rivet, grip, transfix…

(2)put (someone or something) under a spell.

I find myself all too often under an enchantment I do not like. The realization of it comes after many days of living under its spell. I am growing in my ability to recognize the signs and symptoms of this dis-enchantment, but goodness me how subtle yet gripping this type of wicked enchantment can be! Once I recognize it, I know that the only way to undo the spell is to be enchanted by an altogether different tune.

PastelPixieDust

This is when I pick up my pen and draw. I slip pastels into my holster and stuff paintbrushes into my quiver. This is when I do battle with the enchantments of fear, worry and the underlying belief that it is all up to me by lassoing the beauty around me with lines from my pen, swiping the dust of everyday living away with pastel pixie dust, and painting a new story, the real one, so that I can live there, in the real world. There’s something that wants me to believe this world is all there is. I need a stronger enchantment to fortify what I know to be true:

There is so much more than what meets the eye! But it is in seeing our lives for what they  are, being present and grateful IN THEM, and looking THROUGH and BEYOND them, that we will know the true reality of life.  

This hymn has been playing in my head the last day or two. It DIS-enchants the spell of nose-to-the-grindstone living. The words weave through my moments reminding me that this truly is my Father’s world where He rules, though so much threatens to undo it.

PastelPlay

Today, I’m wielding my pen and pastels, charcoal and paints, allowing the enchantment of art to work its magic in my heart and remind me of what is True.

I hope you can spend some time doing this too!

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*In the first pic up there, you see my small pastel box. I have a much larger one I pull out for large scale paintings. But this one was a gift from my grandmother many many years ago when I was maybe 9 or 10 years old. It has since been refilled with different pastels, but I love it as it reminds me of my artist grandmother Thelma who not only painted with pastels, but also knitted beautiful things.

A Bale of Words

Available in My Etsy Shoppe

Another “sitting” out in my favorite field just after the baling. This time with my pastels in My Little Black Book.

Available in My Etsy Shoppe

And a different sort of “bale” here…words bundled together in a little poem I wrote several years ago:

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I like you standing there…

Your presence brings comfort amid the recently ravaged landscape.

I walk beside my favorite field,

once filled with waves of grass and weed,

fern and vine, wildflower and morning glory.

I wince at the shearing—

too much is exposed.

But soon you are there.

All that I loved so is bound up in you.

Your solid cylinder a testimony to the weightiness of glory.

Your firm shadows welcome on the sun-blanched scalp.

I hope that you will remain,

that I might gain

some sense of solidity when I next pass by.

But alas, I hope in vain.

Another will come and lead you away to wait in shelter as fodder for animals.

I grieve the cycle, knowing it will begin again,

wondering if there will be an alternate end for me.

-jpe

upon her walk 9/23/08

Whose Fields These Are

 

Whose fields these are…

 

 

Whose fields these are I think I know…

His house presides o’er fence below.

 

His cattle say their grace each day

Content to watch and eat and stay.

 

The fields, they hum a beckoning tune-

To roam, to fly, to surf their dune,

 

To live with graceful, swaying ease,

To know no bounds, nor responsibilities.

 

To run and play and frolic free,

To chase the butterfly…or not…as you please.

 

Walking away, their song remains,

Though I am bound for my life’s restrain.

 

And as I enter my home’s gate,

I bow my head to plead for grace…

 

To watch and eat and yes, to stay;

To boundlessly live within the fray.

 

May 29, 2010

Jennifer Edwards

**For those of you who have just recently joined me here on Drawn2Life:

My neighborhood is right next to a beautiful farm owned and run by an incredibly young 84 year old man named Mr. Whicker.  You can read more about “My Field” here and here and here.  And for even more, you can click on the category “The Field” over in the right-hand margin.  It is a place of inspiration for me which I frequent every day on my walks and as I drive through it, out into the world.

What We’re Looking For…

Every day, I flip the lime green lid of my iPad, and after some minutes of perusing the latest postings on my Google Reader, browsing through the latest Facebook updates, reading emails, touching base with favorite apps…I begin to wonder, “What is it I’m looking for?”

On Sundays, beginning Saturday evening, I try to take a break from it all.  I try!  It is amazing to notice in oneself the pull of the afore-mentioned things.  To note the lure of “just checking in”.  Really, what is it I’m looking for?

I’ve just returned from a five-mile walk in and around my neighborhood.  I don’t typically do the full 5-mile loop (usually just 2 or 3), but today, I really wanted to be out for a long lovely walk, breathe in the fresh air, hear the leaves rustling as a storm-front begins to roll in.  What is it that lures me out on these walks? What is this siren song that sings to me, calling me to come tromp the paved roads while taking in roadside wildflowers?  It hit me while I was out there…

Inspiration.  Aren’t we all looking for inspiration?  We want to be romanced…and I don’t mean in the gooey, lovey way, but in that classic sense of being wooed and won over by Beauty.  I look for it when I peer into my iPad, I look for it on my walks, I look for it in the faces of my lovely family who has celebrated me on this Mother’s Day in such a touching way.

To say that I would prefer to be out of doors to gazing into a rectangular square gadget would be an understatement.  I often think I could walk and walk and be filled to brimming over with Beauty.  My life doesn’t allow for this.  The key is to go a-gathering…to drink in as much of it as I can, to harvest it if you will, so that I can then spill it over to those I live with and around.  And even perhaps a drop or two of it to you, my blog friend.

It was on an artist’s blog that I found this quote by Wendell Berry.  I cannot for the life of me remember whose it was.  It was weeks ago.  But the poem has stuck with me and has inspired me on many occasion as I recall it to mind.  I’ll leave it with you today…in hopes that you might also choose the outdoors over technology on occasion.  That you might drink in the Beauty even of just a breeze on the skin, or the smell of grass and earth. And that it might restore your worries to a sense that all will be well.  Perhaps you could paint it, draw it, write about it then.  When inspiration comes my way, I just have to translate it somehow in a drawn image…perhaps that’s my way of finally ingesting it into my heart and life.

The Peace of Wild Things

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

— Wendell Berry

My Little Black Book

Years ago, my mom gave me a little black drawing book.  I think it’s about 5″ x 5″ filled with a wonderful black card-like paper just perfect for soft pastels.  I’ve returned to swiping the luscious colors around on these pages and thought I’d share a few.  These two are from Piano lessons.  Not my lessons, but Maddie’s.  Every week I get to sit out in their “outdoor room”…a wonderful open space so comfortable for sitting and viewing their backyard.  So while Maddie plays piano and learns from Ms. Randi…I get to draw and paint! Come to think of it…I’ve made a good many drawings from this little outdoor space, here and here and here! Perhaps I shall make copies to put in a little book to give to them.

I’ll share some of the other drawings in my little black book soon.  Several of them are of “My Field”.  I may be pairing them with poems I’ve written, both recent and from a couple of years ago.  I have a serious backlog of stuff I want to share with you, so please do come back and visit soon! I just love it when you do!