Your Work Will Catch Up With You
I've been calling this the 'tomato post' in my mind for some time. You see, when I began this blog, I worried I might run out of material - things to say, photos, both. In the fall, after the first frost, the grocery store had these tomato plants and I brought one home and immediately took photos. But I didn't really have anything to say concerning tomatoes, or this little out of season tomato plant, or the way the light seemed to be drawn to the spindly little thing, or about the way the tomatoes themselves tasted so sweet and fresh and hopeful, but I thought, I'll save the photos onto my desktop, and they'll be there when something comes to mind.
I was going to skip posting at all on Friday, because I think people will either be inundated with the inauguration, or trying to stay off social media and the internet in general. Then I thought, whatever I post will be around for later, people can read and catch up with it later if they like.
Our work is like that. I remember when I had 3 manuscripts, unpublished, seemingly unwanted, stacked up on my desk. It was kind of a dark time. In truth, I found it very dark. I wasn't sure what to do. Chuck them all? But it was difficult to move on, to keep writing, when I had such a volume of unpublished work. Eventually though, and slowly, two of the manuscripts found their homes. (One of those is Rumi and the Red Handbag, the other, Asking). And then the third one inspired this blog and finds its way into various posts, so I feel as though it hasn't been lost either.
I wish I'd had just a constant voice whispering to me, continue, continue. I wish I had known that my work would catch up with me, that I could have trusted in that. This goes for all our work.
Artists of all sorts have to cope with this all the time. Paintings pile up, are stacked, faced away, against walls in studios. What was new and exciting for the artist when created, takes a while for the viewers to absorb, to come back to. All I can say, is that from experience, I know that these are the works that are a short (or long) time later, ones that others come to in astonishment at their beauty and accomplishment.
I admire the following words by Maya Angelou:
And I also admire these words by Rabbi Nachman of Bratslau:
"Always be joyful, no matter what you are. With happiness you can give a person life. Every day we must deliberately induce in ourselves a buoyant, exuberant attitude toward life. In this manner, we gradually become receptive to the subtle mysteries around us. And if no inspired moments come, we should act as though we have them anyway. If you have no enthusiasm, put up a front. Act enthusiastic, and the feeling will become genuine."
So my words for you today, are, continue, keep working, be joyful, be kind and enthusiastic, and be receptive to those subtle mysteries which really are around us at all times. Keep putting yourself in the light, keep going. Continue.
That is all.