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Friday, September 18, 2015

Give (#1)

Ordering a man to write a poem is like commanding a pregnant woman to give birth to a red-headed child.  ~Carl Sandburg


Amendment                                                            Christina Davis

The love of each of us
for some of us,
                        of some of us
for all of us—
                        and what would come if it were
                        welcome, if learning were
                        to prepare “a self with which to
           the in-
admissible,        stranger
whose very being gives
a discrepancy. School of our just
beginning to think
about this,       I believe
the seats will be peopled.


"To progress in life you must give up the things you do not like. Give up doing the things that you do not like to do. You must find the things that you do like. The things that are acceptable to your mind." ~Agnes Martin


"A man will give up almost anything except his suffering." ~John Cleese


"Just do your work. And if the world needs your work it will come and get you. And if it doesn't, do your work anyway. You can have fantasies about ...having control over the world, but I know I can barely control my kitchen sink. That is the grace I'm given. Because when one can control things, one is limited to one's own vision." ~Kiki Smith

I ONLY DANCE FOR MY MOTHER                      Mathias Nelson

She gives me the wine
and I take the wine.
I mop her floors
and she walks on them
while they’re still wet
so I begin to dance
to warn her of how
easy one can slide.
She watches
grinning in her old green jacket
before going outside
to see the moon on the snow.

“The city gives us a feeling of being at home. We must take the feeling of being at home into exile. We must be rooted in the absence of a place.” ~Simone Weil

The word guru means ‘one who dispels the darkness,’ which is different from giving light. Giving light means giving someone something that they don’t already have. Gurus remove the layers of darkness and show you what’s already there. They peel away the self-hatred,the guild, the shame, the fear.  ~Krishna Das

In the end it all comes down to this you have a choice (or more accurately a rolling tangle of choices) between giving your work your best shot and risking that it will not make you happy, or not giving it your best shot -- thereby guaranteeing that it will not make you happy. It becomes a choice between certainty and uncertainty. And curiously, uncertainty is the comforting choice.
~David Bayles & Ted Orland In Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking


1 comment:

Jessica Goodfellow said...

I would like the Carl Sandburg quote much better if he has said, "Ordering a woman to write a poem is like commanding her to give birth to a red-headed child."

But I suppose we are all a product of our times.