Tag Archives: coming full circle

Coming Full Circle: prayer flag #12

5 Feb

wallHonoring Diversity.

A dozen prayer flags in as many days.  (The 12th follows) So beginning left to right,  Freedom of Speech, The Sacred Hoop, Encouragement, Transformation, Freedom from Persecution, Metta, Standing Firm, Honoring Diversity (above), Into the Stillness, Holding Truth and Warrior Women


Today’s releaser-of-prayers marks the end of a series–the end of an effort that has traveled full circle.  There may be more.  Or not.   Their mission has been accomplished and eco printing calls.

Although externally nothing has changed, internally I am more centered.  (I was going to say “on solid ground” but still reaching for that place.)   But I find myself better able now to stand and face the is-ness of #45 without totally losing my center–or my mind.

upclose

Today’s flag Coming Full Circle started as usual with no name and no real plan.  Handling scraps.  I came across the body–a pure white woven rectangle and the process began.   Initially I thought about purity.  Cleansing.  So they are embedded in this irrepressible sprite who refuses to be boxed in–thus the opening in the sky—a passageway–a portal for transcending.  She begged for color and before I knew it, her headdress and heart were  in place.  And a light-hearted cosmic dance was underway.

Hand dyed indigo backing.  full

Thank you for accompanying me on this journey.

From Primitive Icons to Ecoprinting

10 Apr

 

One night in 1990 I awoke from a deep sleep knowing I needed to set free–release–my primicons.  Primitive icons.  This need to create had a life of its own.   I started with rebar wire and paper mache.  Added wood chips to the mix–and paint.  Later covered the wire with muslin.  Anything that would hold shape.  I worked late into the nights.  My kitchen was no longer a place for meal preparation so much as an abode for these guys.  Years later when my dad gifted me a pile of rusted corrugated industrial roofing and an acetylene torch, their shape and stature grew.

I don’t know where these entities come from–or why.  But they’re still demanding “air time.”  And that is the dilemma I’m facing with eco printing.

I love what I consider to be the magic of eco printing.  Love the surprises.  The constant barrage of “what ifs?”  Love trying to understand why the various elements act and react as they do.  So there’s all of this.  And now I find myself moving into a different phase with the process.  Moving towards the things inside me–the ubiquitous primicons –that want out.

Primicons are the expressions that come out of me.  In truth, there are other forms I would like to explore–more palatable forms perhaps–but after almost 30 years of living with these beings, I accept that they are here to stay–will probably follow me into the great beyond.

They’ve been patient with my yearlong exploration of eco printing but today I experienced a minor revolt.  They want OUT.

deer2deer1

So I’m “experimenting” with process.  How to create in a way that eco prints and primicons can co-exist while maintaining the sustainable, environmentally benign characteristics of eco printing?

These  first, initial experiments have a ways to go.  And although I have concerns about their appeal–appeal of the primicon–clearly it’s a  moot point.

 

 

A Stink Bug Moment

21 Aug

I’m sitting here watching a stink bug crawl across the window screen.  It grabbed my attention just as I was thinking about time.  The different qualities of time.   Times that speed by.  Times that don’t.   Thinking how months and years seem to be moving faster.  Remembering summer days as a kid.  Months between one school year ending and another beginning stretching on forever.  And so I’m watching this stink bug. It’s not in much of a hurry but it clearly has something to teach me.   My scalp is starting to do the funny thing it does when this sort of thing happens.  I have a hunch what this demo is about but I’m going to really sit with this one because I sense that it is important.  And I don’t want to trivialize the message.

stink bug

But besides just the quality of time’s speed, I’ve also been thinking about its structure. And before I go any further, I need to clarify this. When I say “thinking,” I don’t mean I sit around for hours or even minutes at a time really pondering time. I simply mean thoughts about time run across the ticker tape periodically. There they are, and then they’re gone. But still, time has been somewhat of a theme lately. And about the structure of time, I’ve been wondering–is it linear? is it circular? is it some other structure outside of our habituated 3-dimensional perspective? I think so. Yes. I think it is some thing else. But like the stink bug’s message, it eludes me. Teases me. Feathers my nose. Does that thing to my scalp.

So yes, I was surprised to see it’s been two weeks since I last posted. Two weeks of intense shepherding of the grandchild variety. All summer, actually, but much more so this past bit. And today school started. So.

This is what I want to show. The morphing of cloth. A project that started out with potential. Earth tones from black walnut and the pinks– Amma roses. Maybe I should have stopped there. Maybe it was finished. But it didn’t feel like it was. and then…heart with filter Then it stalled out. Completely. And waited and waited and waited. Until a Rumi quote came to me. I wasn’t looking for it but clearly needed to have it. And it seemed the cloth needed it as well.

Then this:back to sleep
and a step is missing. The way the cloth looked before the entire thing went back into the black walnut vat. That’s the missing step. And the black walnut bath–made the words almost impossible to read. Darkened things up way more than I wanted. It seemed unredeemable. Ruined. The cloth barely escaped scissors several times. Shuffled around the work room looking for a landing spot and ended up wadded in the corner. Very sad. Both of us.

Segue. I’ve mentioned Jude and spiritcloth frequently. No words really to describe the experience of being her student. And now her focus has shifted again to color and I have been inspired to play along–experimenting, exercising. With colors other than the “saddened” ones I get from backyard dyeing. I love those muted tones, yes, but sometimes nothing else will do but pure, vibrant color. So several samplers for sampler’s sake color chart

and then this:breeze at dawn

In person it’s better. The walnut stain is more pronounced. The colors are more vivid. The purple is really intense–not blue. But overall, this is what happened. The story of one cloth’s journey. It reminds me of my own life. The changes. A consistent underlying direction perhaps–but the unimaginable changes. And I think it’s o.k.

A Crone’s Story: On coming full circle

29 Jun

First there was this–moon sketching. Two eyes, wide open, witnessing acceleration. Expansion.

seeing at the speed of light

… a visual portal for seeing what now seems very obvious. Upon reflection and a week of sitting and holding the feeling that some thing was not quite right. We were missing some thing–Crone and I. And yesterday, in a moment of silence, we heard as if with one ear, this: “Transcending difficult situations is only one part of what you will do. But ‘transcending’ does NOT mean cutting yourself off from your ground, from your roots, from your past. You may try to do that but it’s impossible, for one thing, and it’s counter productive for another.”

What? What? We sat together with this, Crone and I. She was the first to nod. Yes. So clear now. what were we thinking when we slashed off the bottom part of the cloth?cronecomplete

Simply a knee jerk reaction that provided a much-needed sense of space. A Gap.

True. The foundation of her life WAS complex. It was. And there were parts that felt scary and confusing. But they were hers and by accepting them back, she reclaimed some thing.

So. A bit of space was added. A blue strip provided perspective–space–and the cloth grew a bit and was whole again. And funny now how the red puppy, fangs and all, seems so benign. To think that a week ago it was all so overwhelming. But the red thread–the life force–remains entact. And Crone marvels at its ability to stretch and accommodate her need to fly.fearless flight1

And because they are also part of this story, part of the nudge that opened our ears, I want to thank Mo, Dee and Julie for showing interest in red puppy. And I want to thank Grace, who said some time ago, “Just stand and face.” And of course, thank you, my Crone, for listening.

The Outer Banks of NC

17 Jun

I’ve just returned from a week on the Outer Banks of NC. Salvo was the destination, although now Salvo, Rodanthe and Waves all run into one and it’s hard to discern where one begins and one ends. Further south is the town of Avon–originally called Kinnakeet. A Croatan word that means “land that juts into something.” In this case, the “something” is Pimlico Sound. A large body of water in between Hatteras Island and the mainland.

The Croatan were a branch of Algonquins who lived on Hatteras Island. In 1995 or thereabouts, an archaeological dig down in Buxton, south of Avon, uncovered a 16th century English signet ring. Validating previous speculation that the members of the original Lost Colony really DID make their way down Hatteras and were incorporated into the native community. That’s what I hope. And after all the speculation about blue-eyed natives, it seems that perhaps they were given “shelter from the storm.” Virginia Dare raised by a Croatan family. I like to imagine that.

But the Roanoke-Hatteras Croatan Indians suffered the same fate as most other indigenous people. They were hunters. Fishermen. Farmers. With limited defense systems. Limited defense against European disease. European aggression. And the perhaps not-so-unique American concept of manifest destiny. It’s an old story. Old. Sad. True. It’s a spin we often don’t read about in American History. And even though the the Hatteras Croatan all but disappeared, genealogical descendants still get together in August. In Manteo, for their annual pow-wow.

I have my own history with the Outer Banks. Really a history unlike my relationship with any other place on earth. In 1963 my mother took me and my three siblings there. It was the first year the island of Hatteras had become accessible by bridge. Prior to that, the only way over was via ferry. In 1963 the Island was–how can I say it–pristine? And basically, although it’s a stretch, I could say it still is. But it’s a stretch. I’ve been back there many times. In many very different situations and can attest that A LOT has changed in 50 years. With the island and with me. And I never fail to be amazed at the island’s ability to open up my memory bank to things long forgotten or buried. That’s how it functions for me.

The Outer Banks–a narrow skinny sand bar that’s constantly shifting and changing. It’s a barrier island. As much in need of protection as the mainland it’s protecting. The Audubon Society has stepped in because several native bird species are disappearing. Those little birds that used to be there, running one step ahead of the surf. I didn’t see any this time. Not one. It took me a few days to realize that. That some thing was missing. The sand pipers. The Outer Banks are for me the only place where water and sky meet to form the vastness of ocean as I understand it to be. Still, in order to continue appreciating the wonder of the place, I must struggle with the changes wrought on it by encroaching development. That’s a challenge. A huge challenge.

On this trip, we had wonderful weather even though Hurricane Andrea was brewing. Around Manteo on the way in, we drove through a pretty fierce storm
storm front
but we drove out from under the front as we crossed Oregon Inlet and the only other rain we experienced happened while we were sleeping.

First morning heading through the dunes to the ocean:through the dunes

and then the beach

logan running

lunch at the beachshell searching

I worked on several cloths while we were there–a family cloth where each of the eight of us created our own representation of self from scrap pieces–and a second cloth. Here’s a sneak preview through a hole in an oyster shell. A shell fragment for face. I became fascinated with imperfect shells. More on that later. This post has become too long now. I will post cloth images later on.
parallel realities1

Metamorphose of Cloth

13 Jan

The healing cloth is finished now. The butteryfly representing the evolving process and lending Hope to the journey. And underneath one small square, etched in the fabric, was the image of an eye. Begging to be embroidered.  And viewed upon request. Thus the flap. And the blessings continue to flow outward.woven hearthidden door
i see you

Cloth as Healing

9 Jan

Yesterday I posted a request for healing.  And because this is a blog about cloth, I used pieces of cloth  to illustrate  the request.Intention

Only the woven center was mindfully constructed with focus on healing.  The gauze and red linen were just there–so I used them.  It was that unplanned.  Not a project.  Not the beginning of something else.  Simply cloth and color accompanied with a request that healing flow  towards a loved one.  Or so I thought.

I left the cloth pieces on the table and several times during the day  looked at the little pile –the gauze was turning into something that suggested a heart.  An unplanned surprise.  But the red linen started Really bothering me.  Nice by itself, but clashing somehow with the overall intention.   Clearly lacking gentleness.  Off and on during the day I switched out backgrounds.  Nothing was working–better, worse–but never just right.  So I went to bed.

This morning just as I was ready to pitch the pieces in the scrap pile, I tried one more thing–auditioned one more piece of fabric that I’d been saving for something special, and immediately it seemed to pull things together.

But the muslin strips weren’t right.white stripe

So I replaced them with old pieces from my grandmother’s pillowcase crochet–black walnut dyed.  crochetAnd the cloth started to speak to a sense of ease, or comfort, or gentling.  Started to speak towards healing perhaps.  A very interesting evolution.  All happening seemingly with a life of its own.

And it’s still going.  Now I’m hearing that Maybe just a touch of the original red is called for here?  A reminder of fire, energy, life force?

crochet with redSo the cloth is healing itself in a way.  Moving from a haphazard arrangement of individual pieces towards something integrated.  So I sit here with this awareness, that  this process is simply a microcosm of life  The constant adjusting, repairing, mending, realigning, rearranging of self. Moving and shifting and all the while  mysteriously pulled towards the place that resonates with “yes.”

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