Drunk painting

I think it is funny, all these paint-and-drink events I keep reading about. This is a new trend – to get people to come out for an evening of painting and drinking. Perhaps they have to drink in order to paint? Perhaps they have to loosen up in order to let out their inner artists.
To me, being artistic is intoxicating enough. I don’t need extra. But I certainly understand that other people do. I remember when I did.
I remember when I thought that the only time I could be creative was when I was stoned. I remember one of the reasons I used to say I could not stop smoking pot was that it would stunt my creativity.
Nothing is sillier than that. Pot and booze don’t make you creative. They just make you forget yourself.
And maybe that is the point. We get stuck in our view of ourselves. We create these rigid roles of who we are. We are shopkeepers, or secretaries. We are adults, parents, responsible people. We have grown past being creative, right?
But we haven’t. Art isn’t just for kids, just like reading isn’t just for kids. But then again, that too could use some work. Way too many parents get books for their kids and not for themselves. Reading, and art, is for everyone.
Create art, however you can. Creating art is healing for the soul. It won’t look pretty at first. It doesn’t ever have to look pretty, in fact. It just has to happen.
I create something every day. I think of it as a vitamin for my soul. I write, paint, draw, collage, or bead. Sometimes I do several of these. Sure, I have a full time job and run a house. Yet I make time to create every day. If I don’t, I feel out of sorts. I’ve learned that creating things isn’t extra. It is everything.
When I create, I don’t forget myself. I find myself.
Art, unlike alcohol or drugs, has no negative side effects. Don’t ask your doctor if art is right for you. Just do it.

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Poem – the meal of grief

Grief is a meal that must be eaten.

You cannot leave the table until it is finished.

You can cut it up
into tiny little pieces

or try to wolf it down

but either way you must eat it.

It is harder when it is cold
when you have waited so long
that your tears are the sauce.

It is impossible when it is fresh,
when it is raw.

Then your body barely has room
for breath,
much less anything else.

However it comes to you, it is your task.
No one else can do this for you.

However it comes to you
sit down
look at it
and accept it.

Give thanks for it.

For grief blesses you
and breaks you
and puts you in Communion
with God
and everyone else.

Grief is the great equalizer.
And the great humanizer.