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I am UmberDove.

And by that, I mean an artist.  One who hears stories in the wind, who paints because it is what her soul tells her to do, who smiths because the muse moves through her fingertips, who loves nothing more than the promise of an unexplored trail, the sound of the ocean in her ears, and scent of a serious cup of coffee.


After the Quiet


This afternoon I took myself, Sancho, Pierré the Canon and a two percent Latté into the forest.  Winter made a great show of arriving and we sloshed through deep mud and wadded in ferns rib-high.  I've had a quiet week, the kind where so much time was spent digesting the beautiful aftermath of the yoga weekend, that I had little to say externally.
I found something so glorious within that I could not be bothered with banal duties.  I sang aloud and let the laundry sit.
I fell down the well.  Sancho, beautiful beautiful soul came and laid his jowlies on my knees and gave me everything in his soulful eyes.  Thai velcroed himself to my lap and purred with all his might.  These canine hearts, these feline souls are some of my dearest confidants and best friends.
I gained courage in a painting I'd set off in a corner of the studio, one that I've not been ready to face until now.  I started it several months back with a ghost of imagery playing in my head; when I began to paint in earnest, I found the meaning, what I would need to confront within in order to paint in utter honesty.  And I was not ready.  Not until this week.
I found a window flung wide open, after months and months of feeling my way in the dark, looking for any small fissue to gain a way forward but finding only solid rock.
I started three new paintings (PINK! Oh my god, it's so pink, an internal cavern of anatomy, deep and pulsing.  But somehow, so exactly right).
I've listened to so much wordless music.
I feel like last week was one of those existential birthings, one that I've been carrying for a long long time.  It was perfect, it was rocky.  Thank god I have a good man and some sturdy running shoes.  And that I know the secret to a great 6-layer bean dip (it's Fayeh yogurt in place of sour cream.  Come on.  So delish) and this salad, because it was all I could carve time to eat.
But tonight, before I take on my womanly duties (there are approximately one hundred and twenty pounds of beast waiting to be fed - daylight savings is throwing them off and the bitch session is incredible), I want to share this with you.

"Everything is gestation and then birthing.  To let each impression and each embryo of feeling come to completion entirely in itself, in the dark, in the unsayable, the unconscious, beyond the reach of one's own understanding, and with deep humility and patience to wait for the hour when a new clarity is born; this alone is what it means to live as an artist.
In this, there is no measuring with time, a year doesn't matter, and ten years are nothing.  Being an artist means not numbering and counting but ripening like a tree which doesn't force its sap, and stands confidently in the storms of spring, not afraid that afterward, summer may not come.
It does come."
- Rainer Maria Rilke
If a heart falls in the forest, does it mean it's made of lichen?
Peace be with you tonight.
~ Umber ~