Look to Art and Beauty

Since my father passed away, I have been looking to art and beauty in the everyday. When he was alive, there wasn’t a hummingbird, a great oak tree, a good history book, a classical piece of music, or an oil painting of the beautiful English countryside that he didn’t take close notice, appreciate, and share with me. There wasn’t a day he didn’t notice Nature’s bounty and beauty, or a brilliant work of art.

As I carry him with me, I am reminded with every death, there is rebirth. For every person who dies, a baby is born. For every inhale, there is an exhale. I, of course, have intellectualized these truths, but not until I experienced my father’s passing, did I know what rebirth felt like to die to the past and weave a new life for myself.

In the book, The Second Half Life: Opening the Eight Gates of Wisdom, anthropologist and author, Angeles Arrien states, “We are all born with a great dream for our lives. A dream that may have been derailed along the way by family and career responsibilities or submerged by our own choices. In the second half of life, after your roots have gone deeply into the world, it is time to resurrect this dream.”

As a writer and insight practitioner, I look to art and beauty for inspiration. A lover of silence and creativity, the two go hand in hand, to provide the Inner Peace I value as much as the breath. Every morning, I walk my dog, then sit down to write, read and wonder about the mysteries of life all around me.

Today, I picked up the memoir, Remembering Miss O’Keefe, Stories from Abiquiu, by Margaret Wood to deepen my new roots here in Sonoma. In 1976, Wood leaves her home in the Mid-West to start a new life by accepting employment as a companion and caregiver to Georgia O’Keeffe in Abiquiu. Wood was only 24, O’Keeffe 89 with failing eyesight but nonetheless a fearce personality. The chapter titles alone when strewn together become its very own poem and reminds me of the sublime, the divine workings of the human spirit.

Weaving a New Life, The Garden and the Watercress Stream                                                                  Evening Rhythms, High Adobe Walls                                                                                                                 Tales from the Past, The Blank Canvas                                                                                                                   Land of Red Hills, The Roofless Room

One thought on “Look to Art and Beauty”

  1. I like the reference to “the second half of life” as it provides each of us with the opportunity to review where we are and where we want/need to go in this phase of our lives. I feel good about my life overall, however, my list of “things to do” contain quite a few things yet to accomplish and/or to complete. Hopefully, in 2017, I can cross off some of these unfinished priorities on my list. What a great feeling that will be!

    I have met Margaret Wood, O’Keefe’s assistant. Her life with O’Keefe provided her with inspiration and commitment to creativity, particularly writing. So, O’Keefe really can influence us all. She certainly does me with respect to photography, my approach to art.

    Wishing you the best with your focus on creativity, Monica.

    As an aside, I think the redesign of your blog/website is great.


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