Having Wings is a community-sourced advent anthology created / edited by Amy Bornman (of All Well Workshop), and it contains a drawing I made and words I wrote this advent season. Amy’s thoughtfulness in her creative process and beautiful handsewn creations have been inspiring as I consider my work (“art” and otherwise), and how it intersects with the values by which I hope to live. So when she announced an invitation to participate in this gathering of poems for the hoping, waiting season of advent, I wanted to contribute.
Most of my drawings this year have been unplanned curves filling sketchbook pages, as I try to get outside of a systematic mindset when it comes to making. Searching for the intuition I hope I have, and maybe starting to find it in this practice. After filling untold sketchbook pages with these swirling lines, I started noticing forms that reminded me of art historical Madonna and Child paintings. (A lovely google image search: “abstract madonna and child”.) Continue reading “having wings”→
In which the art taught me something, like it always does, and that something was a reminder rather than something new. It’s the same lessons – love, be not afraid, trust, stay – over and over again for this self who is by grace becoming a tiny bit more well-integrated.
“That one time” happened less than three days ago and now I’m up at 7:30am-feels-like-1:30pm, 20 hours of travel removed from Rome and it kind of doesn’t feel real.
But, it was. And it was so worth it because the Sistine Chapel was perhaps the most overwhelmingly beautiful thing I have ever observed. The paintings – oh! yes, the paintings; but also the deep commitment among the men who took it from idea to reality, and the weight of the fact that I know this God whose story is laid out so beautifully before the eyes of thousands of people every day. I know this God and he’s infinitely more beautiful than even the grandest examples of human creation. He’s the origin. I, a self-supposed lover of Beauty, forget that far too often.
Standing, eyes upward, in the chapel with these things in my head, it was all I could do not to weep for the sheer too-big-for-words beauty of it all. In the end, sure, it would have been sad to visit Rome and miss the Sistine Chapel, but it’s heartbreaking to consider a life without any acknowledgement of ultimate Beauty.
One thing I have asked of the Lord,
that will I seek after:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord
and to inquire in his temple.
Ever since the evening of conversation and music Krystiana writes about here, the lyrics and lessons from that night have been rolling around in my head. I’m glad she got to writing about it first, because she articulates our little story of messy brokenness and hope in a way that is so honest and beautiful. (My friends are the coolest.) Please, enjoy — and I hope you’re encouraged as well.
One of my favorite things about the beginning of break is the liberty-luxury of extended time for people, without the nagging pressure of Things I Ought To Be Doing Instead. It was 2am one night this week when I realized I had spent quite literally the whole day speaking/listening/learning/dreaming/gushing/ranting/relating with people I care about. Some of those conversations were planned, some were by accident, and all were wonderful.
Definitely in the accidental category was the moment when my dear friend Lynnette (who writes here, among other places, and whose friendship is one of my favorite things that has happened in college) and I realized that we had both gotten ourselves into the same embarrassing, irresponsible predicament on the same day. Along with some wide eyes and grimaces, the situation sparked a deeply refreshing conversation about how somehow, despite being good at quite a lot of things, we are basically…