Night Shade

Light’s departure paints
Strokes on canvas gold
There be no better solace
An ancient story told

To sleep my sorrows go
Failures run and hide
A chill engulfs the nape
Cares soon skyward die

My tree is silent strength
Speaking without words
Holds me in her branches
Kissing stars and birds

I know one song, and nature is my muse.
“Night Shade” – Oils on canvas 9″x12″

In The Middle

We stay close
Bunched up
Grains of sand
On a lonely beach

It drives us mad
This closeness
Transforms us
To lash out
As rattler’s broods

The engine of progress
Its constant drone
Inescapable
Replaces
The music
Of a gentle brook
And the rustling
Of deer moving
Quietly through
Forest’s timberland

So confusing
This voice
That perpetually
Reminds
Of such lovely consciousness
Reminds
Of unknown places
Asking, begging
To be discovered

Diptych – (2) 12″x12″ oils on canvas
I’m sure there are places where the drone of freeways are non-existent.
Where the wind passing through the trees is an event.







Sunset On Red

Unsettled was my body
Floating
Like dust illuminated
Through window’s light
Every atom
Dispersed

Melded with this daily ritual
When blood fills the sky
And a sudden hush
Closes every mouth

All of us
Taken up
Taken aback
Willingly surrendered
To the moment’s
Weightless calling

“Sunset on Red” – 12″x12″ Oils on canvas

The Shape of Things

Everything was falling
Nothing hit the ground
It all floated gently
Despite gravity crashing the party

The pool has a leak
But it never empties
If I could just find the ladder
At least then,
I’d discover the bottom

Water soluble oils on canvas 12″x12″
Not sure what it means…sometimes I have no control over what happens next with the paint.

City and Ocean

Interesting how we try to tame everything.
The ocean, with its wildness pushes against everything we hold as “our own” with total disregard. She doesn’t care about our feelings or our inadequacies. She will eat you up and spit you out. Sometimes, she won’t spit you out.
When we were kids, we would rent “surfrider” inflatables and let her throw us at the beach. We’d walk out the door by nine and by 10:30 we’d be slammin’ the sand. For a couple of bucks, you’d get a bus ride, a soda, a piece of pizza and several hours of end-over-end near-death misses. It was a good thing for mom to get all that energy out of the house for most of the day.
That’s the ocean I like. The one with dolphins that hit the surf, or tiger sharks that’ll “take your leg off”. The one that reminds us what it means to be alive….to live with mortal uncertainty. We tested her, and after a few times in the “washing machine” we decided it’s time to head home….stronger, browner, every orifice full of sand.
Yet for some reason, this is what I think of to paint? A safe quiet harbor?
Who is the one who has been tamed?

20×16 Oils on canvas board

I have only ventured onto the open ocean a few times in my lifetime. Even a couple of days of five foot swells will give you a respect for the sailor that braves a liquid life.

Abstracted Sunset

…or maybe it was sunrise.. I don’t remember

but the woods covered me in near silence
only the sounds of air moving between trees

I could have been a fish off the California coast
In the quiet kelp forest with only the sound
Of water moving toward the shoreline

As it is
I am just human

oils on canvas – 36″x36″

Flowers Near Water

Untrained
Defines the perceptive analysis.
Unschooled
Becomes the label of preference.

And so much has become
This lazy polarization
Of labels
Marginalization

There is power 
In marginalizing
Whether intentionally bigoted
Or by way of “righteous vengeance”

Neither
Have a good “place”
There is only darkness
When hatred 
Is the motive

“Flowers Near Water” has lived with me for some five years or so. It hasn’t always looked this way. It started as an 1/8″ plywood board that I gesso coated….then dried. 
Oils were brushed on…then removed, then reapplied. At some point, I may have used a palette knife or two.
The smell of oils is intoxicating, suffocating. I let it dry for a week or two and worked on it some more. Applying, removing, drying. This went on for months.
I made a frame for it. Hung it. But always felt it needed more. On some occasions while I was painting another piece….if my colors were right, I would add more touches to my friend “Flowers Near Water”.
Recently, I noticed that some of the white paint had too much drying agent and is turning yellow. I will return to this piece to freshen it up….to do my best to make it whole. 
Or I could just throw it away.