Thursday, December 15, 2016

You Reading This, Be Ready

In Foothills Park, in Lake Oswego, there is a grouping of basalt pillars, and on some of the honed or polished faces are inscribed poems by William Stafford.  The following (You Reading This, Be Ready) is one of them.  The painting above is the view from near the pillars, 12x12 oil on panel.

Starting here, what do you want to remember?
How sunlight creeps along a shining floor?
What scent of old wood hovers, what softened 
sound from outside fills the air?

Will you ever bring a better gift for the world
than the breathing respect that you carry
wherever you go right now? Are you waiting
for time to show you some better thoughts?

When you turn around, starting here, lift this
new glimpse that you found; carry into evening
all that you want from this day. This interval you spent
reading or hearing this, keep it for life––

What can anyone give you greater than now,
starting here, right in this room, when you turn around? 

William Stafford

What a fine way to return to one's day after a walk along the river, remembering to be here now.

And then another quick face.

And another view of Oswego Creek; I'd like to revisit it and tame the orange background, cool it down for distance, maybe, rework some reflections and trees.

Now we have snow outside, and I want to switch gears and paint the cold...

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