Monday, October 25, 2010

Who is Coleman Barks?

I had planned to leave a comment on the last post explaining the Coleman Barks link but found that, somehow, I was not able to comment - maybe that post was too long?  another downside of the computer world

I first heard him read at the Museum of Northwest Art's annual Poetry Festival in LaConner, Washington, several years ago.  I then had the opportunity to hear him again in San Francisco.  This man can read a poem in a way that takes your breath away.  He writes his own poetry but he is mostly known for reading and translating the poems of Rumi.

In the video in the post 'Sacred Mountains' below, Coleman is the narrator through most of it.  For me, it adds to the spiritual quality of the piece.  I hope you enjoyed it.

'Water From Your Spring'

What was that candle's light
that opened and consumed me so quickly?

Come back, my friend! The form of our love
is not a created form.

Nothing can help me but that beauty.
There was a dawn I remember

when my soul heard something
from your soul.  I drank water

from your spring and felt 
the current take me.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Nectar of the Gods

'Gyokuro' neckpiece, 30x1.5" sterling silver, tea bag images, mica
Kathleen Faulkner

I live on green tea.  I drink it throughout the day, every day.  It is my one necessity.  I prefer Japanese green tea for it's flavor and since I buy my tea loose, I have to travel to Seattle when I start running low.

I buy my green tea from the asian grocery store in Chinatown.  Uwajimaya is a wonderful place to shop.  It is a bit of visual overload, at times, with all the color and activity and a lot of the food is unknown to me which makes the experience all the more interesting.  My first stop is always the tea aisle.

There are many different kinds and grades of green tea.  Prices can range from $3 to $20 and up per package of about 3 ounces.

Back in the boom times, I'd buy Gyokuro now and again.  It is the finest green tea and was my reward for finishing difficult projects.  These days, I stick to the lesser priced, but still good,  Sensha and  lately, I've also developed a taste for Machagenmai-cha.  This tea is blended with roasted brown rice giving it a roasted, slightly meaty flavor.  mmmm!

Time for another cup of tea.  Cheers!

image: washokofood.blogspot
In Japan, one can get a cup of tea from the vending machine!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Why I wear a hat

'Owl' 5x1.5", sterling and fine silver, glass, plastic, snakeskin,
fossilized walrus ivory, printer's ink; Kathleen Faulkner

Anacortes is home to the amazing Forest Lands Area.  Many miles and many assets: a lake, beaver, hundreds of birds, deer, coyotes, raccoons, porcupine, owl and every other small creature one could imagine.  Trees, moss, mushrooms, you name it, the Forest Lands has it.

I love to walk there:  it's in the middle of town yet a world unto itself and a good place to decompress.

There is a particular owl that lives there who has made a name for itself.  This owl may be a tad bit 'off'.  It thinks hair is potential food and has been known to attack walker's heads.  I've seen this owl because it doesn't try to hide and makes no bones about being seen.  It sits and watches, ready to strike when the moment is right.

This is why I always wear a hat in the Forest Lands.

'Anacortes Forest Lands' digital photo; Kathleen Faulkner

Monday, October 11, 2010

John's Trees

'John's Trees' 17x17" mixed media; Kathleen Faulkner

We walked for hours.  It was a grey day; the ground beneath our feet was spongy, muddy, wet.  No sound but the slosh of our feet and birds, birds everywhere.  Lost in the thoughts of this place, smelling the salt, the mud, the sea,  breathing it in deep, feeling the healing.  
The week had been tough, filled with deadlines, overextended commitments, drama and worries.  I had been looking forward to this day. 

We stopped for a minute when David said, 'Those are John's trees. He planted them.  His energy is still here'. 'I can feel it', I said, and it was true.  The wind suddenly swept up through the trees singing a song of long, lost memories..    Then we continued on our way.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The business of staying alive

'Good Sound Quality' 21x23" oil pastel; Kathleen Faulkner

Here it is October and winter is close behind.  Time is slipping by.  I'm working constantly,  preparing for 'Arts Alive' coming up the first weekend in November with the opening on the evening of November 5th.

I am pleased to announce that I will be in the 'Emerging Artists Show' with my mixd media paintings and, new this year, the 'Jewelry Show' which I will be a part of, as well.
Shortly thereafter is Whatcom Museum's 'Art and All That Jazz' on November 12th.  Work for that is due the end of the month.
Then Christmas is right around the corner which means inventory for my galleries and a couple of Christmas shows.  whew.

I worry that I won't get it all finished. It's the same thing every year.  It's silly, really, since I always do manage to make it all work and I find that little breaks help.

'when it all gets too heavy I go down to the sea'

There is nothing better than spending some time near water.  It clears my mind, is inspiring and I leave feeling like I can actually manage things.  I will be needing to head that way for about an hour then back to the business of staying alive.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Happy to be home

'Sauk Mountain' 17x23" oil pastel; Kathleen Faulkner

When I travel away from the Pacific Northwest I am always happy to be home.  Don't get me wrong.  I miss the friends I visit, I miss the excitement of traveling but, something about our little corner of the world has me  forever.
Yes, the winters are cold, wet, foggy;  a damp cold that chills to the bone.  The summers, especially this summer, less than satisfying with temperatures that compete with the winter temps of California, northern, that is.

There is a reason we are called the Evergreen state:  it's called rain. 

Rain is my inspiration.  It can be depressing at times but it is also a big part of the reason I create.  Art is what I taught myself to do at a very young age to keep the demons away.  It works well.

In the woods above Issaquah
near a grey farmhouse
we pick plums in the rain.
Another day, on Sauk Mountain,
we lie in a meadow.   A bird
jolts a stalk of fireweed
so the light seeds drift over us
     and down the slope.
Far below,  the Skagit River
winds toward the sea, turning
     like a pattern in old jade.
At home you put some tomatoes
on the window sill to ripen,
and I think of jade again.
while a bird outside the window
begins to budge the night away
      with a single sound,
your breasts, your lips, your eyelids
are delicate as petals of
      winter poppies.
I don't know what happened,
One night, no use knocking on your door,
I stepped down from the front porch
as rain fell through big leaves and the grass woke up,
      and your face was
      a small round stone
      falling through dark water.

'In the Woods Above Issaquah'   Robert Sund