The Poet Tree

"Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I'll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass, the world is too full to talk about. 

Ideas, language, even the phrase each other  doesn't make any sense. "

            -Rumi

 The Poet Tree  Oil on canvas. 4 x 4 x 1". 2013   Purchase here     

The Poet Tree

Oil on canvas. 4 x 4 x 1". 2013

Purchase here 

 

Here's a little secret for you: I thought the Poet Tree was a total failure! 

Inspired by the Rumi image of a field beyond separation, I painted it to see what it would look like if there was no visual boundary between a field of flowers and a sky of stars. Well, it looked blobby. 

About a week later, I started playing with it again, adding a translucent tree, that grew into Mary Oliver's Dreams Tree, and my Poet Tree. 

Dreams

All night
the dark buds of dreams
open
richly.

In the center
of every petal
is a letter,
and you imagine

if you could only remember
and string them all together
they would spell the answer.
It is a long night,

and not an easy one—-
you have so many branches,
and there are diversions—-
birds that come and go,

the black fox that lies down
to sleep beneath you,
the moon staring
with her bone-white eye.

Finally you have spent
all the energy you can
and you drag from the ground
the muddy skirt of your roots

and leap awake
with two or three syllables
like water in your mouth
and a sense

of loss—-a memory
not yet of a word,
certainly not yet the answer—-
only how it feels

when deep in the tree
all the locks click open,
and the fire surges through the wood,
and the blossoms blossom.

                -Mary Oliver