at the stars appearing as the night starts
at the child smiling
at the cloud shape-shifting
at the bird taking flight
at the chocolate melting on the tongue
at the ink making words come to life
at the ant pulling a leaf
at the steam rising from a cup of tea
at the sky stretching beyond the horizon
at the bread rising as it bakes
at the rain drop polishing the sidewalk
at the flower hanging from the vase
at the onion slice wilting in the pan
at the universe dancing beyond your imagination.
look around you.
and you will become all of it.
Inspiration: every day.
“Annunciation” by Caravaggio, dated 1608-1609.
For a class I will be giving, I am going in detail through forty or so representations of the annunciation, from early Christianity (3rd c.) to the early 20th c.; and among them, I admit this one by Caravaggio simply stands alone.
Kindly note that underlining this painting does not diminish the beauty, tenderness and even perfection of details in other wonderful representations (the catacombs of Rome, Byzantine mosaics, Medieval illustrated manuscripts, Giotto, Van Eyck, Da Vinci, Cristus, and so many others).
It is simply that Caravaggio gives the viewer so much to ponder through his mastery of painting light and darkness, the gestures, the seemingly simple composition and more. I will write no more and let you appreciate it.
Art via the Musée des Beaux Arts, Nancy.
I am made of clay and wind.
I am made of water and silence.
Every day I crumble.
Every day I rebuild myself.
Inspiration: living one day at a time.
Without a word, he walked out of the temple, each step giving away the scent of jasmine.
He threw his praying beads in the fields, and a garden of roses sprang up.
And still without a word, he gave away his praying mat for the poor to sleep on.
Sufi and Zen inspirations.
Did you know that during some nights,
if you stretch your arm, you can touch the moon?
Now, do so, but very carefully.
I did it the other day,
and well… I tipped it… a bit…
the whole world did not take itself so so seriously!
People laughed for no reasons at all.
It only rained during the night.
The little crabs started walking straight.
And all the children slept peacefully,
all weapons silent… finally.
And all this from tipping the moon … a bit!
Just a little bit, really, when I touched it.
I have to say it was great!
But what a scolding did I get!
Grouchy people had lost their pout,
while chatty politicians were tied up in knots.
I thought it was funny, but they did not.
With all the rain, the insects were a tad frustrated,
but the flowers were delighted,
and so were the gardeners around the world.
A few tulips were even spotted in the Sahara desert!
Crabs got well… slightly dizzy.
Now that’s not so good, is it?
They could have gotten used to walking straight,
I think, most humbly.
The fierce warmongers smiled
twitching their large moustaches,
and some even laughed
when their weapons turned into potashes.
Others I admit, did not like having their shinny boots
covered with pink goo.
Someone else stretched his arm
and tipped the moon back straight.
Now it looks stiff and cold,
and makes me feel so so old.
The grouchy recovered his pout,
the crab walks again sideways,
and it rains most days.
Many children went back to covering their ears
while the warmongers develop new high tech gears.
I want to stretch my arm again,
and make the moon look like Charlie Chaplin.
Come with me tonight and we will do it together.
So that maybe,
the world stops taking itself so so seriously.
The words of the poet save our hearts from mediocrity and putrefaction.
With a dash of ink and plenty of elegance, he knows that each word is as ephemeral as what it says; and herein lies his gift.
Inspiration: reading the poetry of Ryōkan in the early morning.
Cleaning house and heart and mind, making way for simplicity.
Useless trinkets and old poetry discarded, the heavy dust of sadness blown away.
Soft light finally shines through, and quietness comes to rest.
Inspiration: New Year.