Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Clean Sheets

I washed my sheets tonight.
Sheets on the bed of 21 years or is it 22, Who's counting?
I washed those sheets and now I realize that your scent is gone..... I can't get it back.
All the moments you don't remember when you're angry or sad, I can't get those back.
But I washed the sheets and now my mind says it's OKay to make new memories. If only my heart could agree and realize that there is nothing wrong with clean sheets. That what we wanted was fresh air billowing under them.
The old sheets were good. they held Love and pain and babies. But it was time, my mind says, to let them go and have fresh clean ones.
The new sheets are clean, I ask myself; do I really want clean sheets..... it's too late though because they are. Only one side is folded down tonight and the other crisply tucked.
I put the pillow cases on carefully where your head won't lay, it'll be OKay?

I could wish to have it all back the way it was but I won't. It can't be. I realize. My mind and heart will tough it out awhile and the sheets will soak up all the tears and the sweat of my dreams of dark clouds. Spring is coming. Maybe I'll hang the sheets out one day when the weather warms.


Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Illusion of Fear

Yesterday I lay down for a rare afternoon nap.  I'm not sure if it was exhaustion from too many late nights but as I slipped in to the bliss that only an afternoon sleep can be, a deep and haunting blanket of fear settled over...... It was gripping and felt like those images of ominous, black storm clouds sped up in time lapse photography.  I laid on my side, stationary. Hoping sleep would find me deeply and generously, I stayed still. I bargained with God to reveal anything to me so  I could make light of it and enjoy my nap. To no avail, the evil feeling set in to my cells. I had the tell-tale signs of belief.... shivering, speeding heart beats and cold extremities. The interesting thing about the experience is that I had the clear sense that it was a lie, an illusion, completely fabricated by some rogue section of my brain trying to convince me that fear was the right choice. It said all kinds of horrible things to me, "you're not so great", "people are lying to you when they compliment your art",  "you really look old and wrinkly", your career is never going to amount to much", oh and yes even, "no one will ever Love you"......... on and on it went like a hornet lighting on surfaces but never much committing to a specific one.  It was ugly and it lied very well.

Unlike at other times in my life, this time I was able to be an observer, I couldn't make it stop but I felt no need to argue with it. The hornet went on from surface to surface with the occasional sting to see if it could get a reaction. I think I drifted into semi-conciousness and continued to observe. When I woke I realized I had been an explorer in a new frontier of a space and time and that I had been on a quest for it for so long. I had lived for long periods in the blackness of the lie of fear..... it was as real to me as a cream pie in the face.  My sleepy epiphany was standing at the precipice of no return, I crossed the chasm into light and Love.

Have you ever watched a butterfly just after it emerges from it's chrysalis and is a fully intact amazing creature but not quite yet sure of it's flying ability? It sits for a time slowly moving it's wings up and down........up and down............ up and down and then suddenly, as though it's done it for 1000 years,  lifts and floats away in a blur of brilliant colour. I think that's me, now. I'm sitting at the end of the dock just emerged from a long slumber and my wings are testing.... up and down...... up and down........ up and down. I haven't yet believed the moment that comes next. I think we are not prohibited to believe it because it is going to be so much more magical and wonderful than anything ever previously known. It is going to be huge. Possibly heavenly. I was given a glimmer of the fear I've left behind so I won't forget that it's behind me. Its talons used to grip me mercilessly for months at a time but that bird has officially flown the coop. I NEVER will feel that fear again, A new excitement of risk has taken its place. What a wonder is this world.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Art for Your Mobile Device

I'm so excited to be offering 3M skins for your favourite mobile device.  I have iphone 4 skins in the following 4 designs. Special order for any cell phone, laptop or tablet. I even have some poppy paintings coming for my Dad's Kobo...... shhhh, it's a surprise! For easy ordering go to http://www.etsy.com/people/carrieharper
my fave mobile is an iphone 4!


 Daydreams
 Mama Grow
 Uganda Girl
 Fly Girl    



Saturday, April 16, 2011

"If you can't be a good example then you'll just have to serve as a horrible warning"

What do you say when someone asks you how much money you need to make your creative dreams come true? I can confidently, experientially tell what you shouldn't say. First, you shouldn't completely lose your composure and start to look around nervously and you definitely shouldn't say, "about $5000-$10,000". Might be a better idea to remain in the authentic frame of mind you'd been in for the previous  two hours and fifty minutes, having delightful get to know you sort of conversation. Possibly shrug, smile and say "I haven't decided yet, could I get back to you"? Or even, I've had such a nice time, let's not talk about money. A third idea might be, "well, why do you ask"? 
I'm happy to report that I always learn from my mistakes and after much reflection will never again make the mistake of saying something stupid. Or Maybe, probably, oh heck you know I will say something stupid again....... it's one of the things I do best. In the words of Catherine Aird, "if you can't be a good example then you'll just have to serve as a horrible warning".

I've had more rewarding adventures and learnings in the past 48 hrs than the rest of my life rolled together. I've been on a secret journey to see much art and have been rewarded beyond measure. Graffiti, shoes, clothes, conversation, magnolia blossoms and people living artfully is what I've found. I may have to sleep for a week, now, but my dreams will be sweet and my smiles will be real. I've been given a vision of the trajectory I was on and the one I embarked when I made one small change. If I trace the lines out along the triangular space between them it becomes greater with every inch and reveals to me, I am good.

the following poem is by Mary Oliver, The House Light Beacon Press Boston, 1990.
as seen at http://www.bemindful.org/poems.htm
Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean-- the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down--
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?


Friday, April 1, 2011

a lot can change in a week

A whole lot can change in a week. One day last week my Facebook post was "alone is so alone". I was fully prepared to cling to my aloneness for an indefinite amount of time. That if pain was what I had to endure I would do it in the most noble way possible and as long as was required. Today, it would seem that the pain of aloneness has a surprising reward and that by walking directly through it and soaking it all up, full on, it was a short run.
I heard a story once about buffalo facing a storm together by slowly going right through the centre of it. They huddle tight together and use those big furry heads to brave the worst yet shortest distance through the storm. Most other animals sense a storm coming and panic and run the perimeter of it, often getting lost and separated from each other. I decided to step out into the storm, take a risk and really feel the whole hellish thing and I thought I was going it alone. What I discovered is that when I stepped out and took the risk a whole bunch of people stepped in to huddle around me and protect me while I walked through the most difficult.
I am constantly reminded by the cosmic power of each tiny step I take out into a storm I will be taken care of. I am slowly learning to let each day be it's own massive, endless and exciting universe. That tomorrow truly has not been created yet and that today is so beautiful and fulfilling even when I stay in my jammies. I know that there is no room for guilt or regret. That I deserve all good things and really, even the days where I wail in indulgent self-pity are good days. I sit and smile and wonder what is coming tomorrow for today is everything.... how could tomorrow be more?
I'm so inspired by this artist http://www.facebook.com/album.php?id=1332781174&aid=2111366