Not As They Appear, These Things, At All
Feet in the sand blue sky canopy we step into the day. She painter, artist, friend. I write.
We walk into the day. She paints. I weave words, slice them up and move them all around.
There is an unfurling that begins, feet hit the ground, sun up, eyes up. It is what it is.
Or it is what you see, you see. Or how.
You should paint that.. I say, she sees. We see together, we see different.
And I tell her what it is that I am seeing in the rags flapping in the wind. Barnacle laiden flying into the blue.
I tell her of my love for what looks like burlap, though it is not. When we look closer, the burlap was a mesh. It was not as it appeared.
We see different.
And isn’t that the way of the artist. Her art hangs on gallery wall, exhibited and displayed in place of prominence, by selection. Money changes hands between artist and art lover.
Her beautiful eye and her beautiful hand and her beautiful palette of paints will see the world in one beautiful way. The way of artist Laurie.
So she will not paint the flapping brown rags released on line to dry out in the sun, bake out the pluff mud this tool of Lowcountry oyster catcher man.
No she will not paint it, not at all. She will not, can not paint it, paint them, filthy rags.
She will not paint the worn bags on a canvas, capture the bits of white stuck in the mesh like diamonds adorning the fabric of royal silk. Value and beauty in the rubble hanging and dancing in the salty Lowcountry wind, this day.
They whisper to me, come write my story.
Of where I have been drenched in the sea in worn hands of man. Of where I have been dragged across the jagged shore and held the shells which hold the pearl. Holding on and holding dinner.
Out to sea and back again. Out and back, dragged and drug and hung again. To flap and sail swinging in the wind. Tool of man, art to one.
And feet back in the sand, dog in hand, under the oaks we walk and talk. Hit the road. And stop to stare at peacock, hen. As she stands statuesque. I know this bird. But if we had not met I would have thought her dead, not alive. Her stillness, still as stone, her glassy stare belied a bird alive.
Things different. Things changed. Things not quite as they appear after all.
And painter friend she sees what I do not. This walk of artists in the sand. Brings eyes. They collide seeing different. Seeing same.
The Lowcountry littered with joggling boards. Rite of passage for every child along the way. In the south, for children’s play.
And lady peacock, hen has her own. A perch which I could not see. My eyes beheld the beauty only of the bird. At first.
But two together, they double the image, compound beauty.
Bird on a beam. Bird on a board. Bird suspended mid-air. We stare.
So painter, writer see the world through different eyes. But the beauty is compounded when combined.
So husband, father, wife and mother, Christian One and Christian Two. We all do. Our views collide and complement. Artist, painter, artist, writer.
He brings his eyes and I bring mine. She sees the bird up on the board. At first I see the peacock hen and then the board. She is my improved vision. She corrects the lens on life. He is my improved vision. He corrects my lens on life. The complement, the shift in view. Four eyes, two hearts can see together what alone we cannot.
Four friends in search of oysters for our meal and we prefer the singles. Stop by the market ,ask around. Ask some more. The singles are the best and more expensive than the others. The clusters are less desirable in the oyster world.
We buy the clusters or it is no oysters at all. Grab the knives, hold them hot. Fresh from the steamer, grab the hot sauce, lemon and the saltine cracker, eat them up. Can’t get enough. Oysters, hot, delicious clusters. We convert. We elevate these mangled masses of jagged shell to a status new for lover of this delightful delicacy.
And in the world of seafood too. Things are not as they appear. There is delicious delight en masse in groups. These clusters delight the souls of man under the crescent moon. Split open each with a frenzied pace. And let them slide down the throat into the belly.
If you love oysters.
You would love the clusters. The singles no where to be found, the hot commodity. In demand.
We huddle up and split open each, one by one, the oysters held in groups of white grey calloused shell.
The gift is in the blended views. We are lost. We are found. We are both.
We are better with each other. Artist, writer, painter, friend, husband, wife, Christian One and Christian Two. Poetry and prose.
I need you. You help me see. I am found. I am lost. I am both.
And counting gifts with Ann
*New ways of seeing life
*Days on the coast, rediscovering old favorites
*Consoling a child in her grief and finding beauty in the loss of life. Somewhere.
*Hearing a friend’s words at just the right time.
*Watching the dog herd her free range chickens. And delighting in the dance and art there
*Walking in the sun
*Walking under the moon