Sunday, December 20, 2020

Home alone in the Darkness, celebrate!

                           Cook`s Butte Study watermedia on Yupo 14x11 inches, 35.5x28 cm

 This solstice, Australia is not burning, an impeachment is no longer necessary and the Covid 19 vaccine is here! I`m sure grateful, my nurse husband will get the vaccine tomorrow. There is some new evidence that just one shot may be enough thereby doubling the supply. The whole endeavor to produce this vaccine is nothing short of a miracle. Medicine never moves this fast. It`s a hopeful sign that when the world mobilizes, great things can happen. Nearly 40 years have passed since HIV decimated my generation and its vaccine remains elusive.

Soon a responsible decent man will lead our country. Halleluja!

At long last, Congress just passed a new pandemic relief bill today! Mass poverty averted for now.

But the virus rages on. More now have died than during World War 2. The I-pads above are in a hospital ready for the final goodbyes of those dying of Covid. As we all know, because it is so contagious, the families and friends of the dying are not allowed near. The sacred passing from life to death is experienced alone. There is and will be a serious psychological reckoning.

                                    Winter Light watercolor on Yupo 14x11 inches, 35.5x28 cm

                                    Burial at Sea watercolor on Yupo 14x11 inches, 35.5x28 cm

                                    Replication watercolor on Yupo 14x11 inches, 35.5x28 cm

 My most successful efforts of late have been small. With two larger paintings, the struggle continues. These paintings have no destination which has allowed for some patience in resolving them. That feels wonderful. The personal gifts from the pandemic have been significant. As befitting a relationship with a deadly disease, priorities are swiftly reordered into their proper sequence. Concerns that festered are tossed out as the vanities they always were.
 Because John works in a hospital, we understood in a visceral way we could both die from the virus. So we got our act together and created a Living Trust. The future care of my work is addressed and all our affairs are in order. Being so adult nearly killed us but it`s done.

 From a child still young enough to believe in Santa Claus, he questions his own legitimacy. Yes, even some children this young, know they are gay. This is why I talk about my marriage. This is why I use the word husband. This is why I out myself constantly with every person I meet. If there is a context for saying it I will. I owe it to this boy to do what I can to make homosexuality normal and unremarkable. Insist on the reality that it is a fact of nature. And hold religion responsible.

 See that mountain back there? That is Cucamonga Peak, a talisman for the kids of Fontana Calif, where I grew up. It hovered above everything until it got to smoggy to see it. Trust me on this, living in a heavily polluted place harms the spirit as much as the body. I had to leave. Then, California took responsibility for its air, passed laws to clean it up and is now a leader in developing new technologies and strategies to counter global warming. In 1988 I was reading the New Yorker and came across a natural history of the San Gabriel Mountains [Cucamonga Peak is at the east end of the range] by John McPhee. I felt like my mountain worship was vindicated.

Since I`m painting with watercolor so much, I`ve been studying the work of others. Here are some new favorites;

                                                                   Anna Maria Potamiti

                                                                          Ella Clocksin

                                                                        Kamilla Talbot

 Found this on a Portland OR subreddit. Discovered in a back alley poetry shrine;

                                                                 Laura Grace Weldon


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