Hope Springs Eternal... but it takes working on! The coming of Spring signifies Hope in all cultures. It is the time when the Natural World slips from dormancy and the icy shroud of winter. It is the time in the Christian World when Resurrection conquers Death. It is the time in a Child's World when freedom from heavy clothes... a time when freedom of movement and play fills the hearts of the young with joy... delight... and even love.
If you watched the Royal Wedding... and didn't feel the overwhelming and radiating power of Hope... in not only the couple... but the British nation as a whole... then you are incapable of ever finding... or embracing Hope. I am hardly Royalist (though my Mother was). But I was deeply moved by the possibility of a better life for these young people. Their subjects obviously sensed and embraced that notion of Hope.
As I listened to the soaring ... pure voices of the boy choristers reaching to the very heights of the vaulting... one hundred and twenty-one feet above this pageant... my own previous sadness and the cold greyness of our late-to-appear Canadian Spring melted away... and was replaced by true joy... if only for a single day.
As with all aspects of the human condition and experience... paradox exists for all states of being. One cannot understand, or appreciate gain... unless one has felt loss. Light cannot exist or be appreciated... except to have followed on the heels of darkness. Joy is beyond understanding... except for the affliction of pain. And so too... one can only strive for Hope... when one has tasted Despair.
If Hope be a "thing"... a feeling... wherein lives any chance of Hope... or Love prevailing... where might replaces right... where violence against any other individual is justified and condoned out of pure vengeance? What lessons do these thoughts ... actions and even governmental support teach children who look to their adults for direction?
I do not subscribe to... or cannot change those feelings ... or erase the actions of such Hopeless acts... but I can express Hope in my own unique and personal way. "I" choose to continue to reach out ... in Hope and Love.. to whoever will accept it... believe in it ... and pass it forward. I have created a painting which fills my heart with Hope.
Making that painting... as a result of a trip to the Barbados... where I found Hope ... alive and well amongst a vast number less fortunate individuals than my Self.... I returned to Canada and my own life filled with Hope and optimism. That momentary elation and sense of Hope was dashed... temporarily at least, by the combined and overburdening greyness lingering here and in many other parts of the world... the heavy and oppressive weight of a stagnant economy... and even sadder... several world events that eclipsed the Joy and Hope created by the Royal Wedding.
In closing... I offer my painting "Tribute to Hope" and my Mom... now passed... and with it...I would like to share a favourite poem which deeply and emphatically underscores my own personal feelings about Hope... and Hoping! It is a poem by Emily Dickinson... seemingly simple in vocabulary and imagery... on its surface. But ... do take the time to read each word... each stanza... and absorb the energy and message that is skillfully crafted and presented. The subject of my painting is an upright Heleconia... as prevalent (with its sister the hanging Heleconia) in the Barbados landscape... as our bright yellow, saucy "nuisance"... though not to "Me"... dandelion.
Oddly enough... there is a basis for comparison in use of imagery... in Dickinson's poem and my painting. Dickinson uses a bird as the central metaphor to portray Hope. The Heleconia is often referred to as the "Bird of Paradise"... because of its exotic form... colour and surrounding. I hadn't thought of that until this writing.... the Universe does conspire!....HAHA!!
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune--without the words,
And never stops at all.
And sweetest in the gale is heard:
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea:
Yet never in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.
I truly hope that these conjoined offerings warm your soul and raise Hope within...a few rungs higher in each of your separate... but parallel journeys. Embrace Hope... Paint hard... and dream sweet dreams... no matter what goes on about "You"! Stay your course... and Hope! Count your blessings... and not your defeats!
Happy Mother's Day Mom!... and to all Moms wherever you may be!!!
Good Painting! Hoping that life treats us all... a bit better in the upcoming months ahead!
PS A few licks n' a promise still be added to the painting.