Hey, now I could wave a flag like this! In fact, I was waving a flag not like this yesterday in one of those throw-back-to-the fifties home town parades. I looked down and saw my flag was made in China.
Haystack pops front and center in Lichtenstein’s study of pattern creating form. A braille stack redux. I want to reach out and touch the dots, to push them together so they don’t hurt my eyeballs, which constantly try to connect and reconnect them. I give up and decide to study their shape and configuration. Like a nervous-tic they continue to addle my eyes, needling my subconscious. Scatterbrained haystack please stand still, please.
Monet (really people do I have to say it?) Grainstacks at Sunset near Giverny, 1891
A collection of chubby hay bales coming your way.
In Monet’s vision, the haystack stands to the side, giving full deference to the atmosphere. And the sunset in turn, halos the hay in gold. We watch light’s magic, glorifying, coloring and blanching things. And though the colors sizzle, the haystack casts a prosperous cool shadow, holding down the foreground with calm aplomb. Prepared.
These days I swim in a jellyfish bloom. Quite graceful from an aquarium standpoint, rather hazardous if you’re the one splashing.
People have tentacles and you never know when you’re going to meet one unexpectedly. We float through life, trailing long legs of personal history, swirling them about. Some people call this baggage, but baggage doesn’t twist you around and deliver a red whelping sting if you rub it the wrong way.
I’d be just fine if people lugged around suitcases. Bags would fly free with me too. I could pile them up in a corner and look through a valise or two when I needed an explanation for a person’s odd behavior.
But no, most people are jellyfish-y.
And when they swear, “That’s impossible,” it’s usually a long tendril of memories past, wrapping around your neck, giving your lips a clamp. You reply, “In your experience, you’ve never seen this happen.” Of course there are obstacles to the “impossible.” Could be the wisened voice of reason; could be hoarse fear. Or both. Untangle yourself from the jelly barb and move on.
I’m rooting for these soaring ones above. They’ve broken the surface of the sea and taken off. Jellyfish rockets. Going for something I can’t see yet. Maybe the “impossible.” Their past history tendrils fly behind them banner-like, in possible propulsion. Foolhardy. Brave.
The sun’s pierced through and the clouds drip, drip, drip. Not ideal conditions for a launch. But I forecast luck and a favorable wind for these few. Cutting the sky with their rising hue. They have decided to take up flying, a thing once pronounced most definitely impossible. I’m doing a Monday morning cheer (also once thought impossible)
For these wild, color-drenched people. I certainly forgive a sting or two.
Yes, I am missing a cloud today. I’ve looked for it in several places, the usual ones. But not to be found.
Like I look for my life on a Monday morning, in all the usual places, sometimes not to be found. And I’m jealous of these white houses standing so upright and sure. Confident in themselves and their plans. Smug-happy they made the right decisions. Strutting out red-roofed optimism.
They do not lean in, searching. To find that thing they are missing, the white cloud. But the rest of the painting does. The lake and the horizon pinch together in the middle, pull the hills and trees inward, a landscape search party. Bowed around the center.
Ah here it is. The cloud, blithe floating on the convex lake, off-center. Taking a break. Tired of holding up the sky. Gonna leave that job to the others. Maybe it should have been fog in the first place.
But the land does not release its searching tension. The charcoal sailboat still tilts. Maybe we have found what we were looking for, maybe we haven’t. Here the joy is in the looking.