Now here I’ve added the major upper foliage in mostly Sap Green, although I’ve accented in Mars Black and the bright lime mix here and there. Then I went a bit wild with a foreground lyrical black and lime streak stemming from the right, which mimics something in the original foto, but that goes over very, or fairly, careful painting of the Sap Green foliage. Oh my. How the boldness surprises even me. Where does it come from? I just watch and flow and allow. Truly.
So the foliage is about two days’ worth of painting, there. I was meticulous, or more so, with the lower branch, but the upper two were primal and almost from the primary grades alters. I went with it and was flashing back on Vietnam scenes and abuse quite profusely, yet painted triangles within the lines, mind you, and vividly green and neatly. yes.
Strict Time. If you will.
For the jungle even, even all of that can fit in a triangle, in many triangles, yes? The magic of compartmentalization, dissociation. Note.
Okay. Now you are going to flip out.
So, my best friend Linda of lo these years since 2003 when I met her walking Chipper in the adjacent apartment complex, yesterday mentioned Flannery O’Connor, how she’s just yesterday bought her short stories to read, along with The Confederacy of Dunces. Both of which, mind you, are SERIOUSLY on my long long list of TO READ.
How soon we forget and where do I keep that list anyway?
Because suddenly it occurred to me, when did Flannery pass, 1964 she says, No, I gasped, does it say what month, and I start gravitating to the computer, because Linda does not have nor much like the computer or Internet.
Yes, Wikipedia is soon in my grasp and a foto of her and she is totally familiar as is Baldwin County, Milledgeville, …. oh my effing Gah this is all and we
talk and talk and
you are going to think I’ve totally lost it
but you see since I was little I’ve been looking for people who died right before me
She passed on August 3, 1964 and I was born on October 26, 1964. Okay, so.
But she was a flaming independent darkly comic Southern female “Gothic” Catholic spiritual wild writer. Who dealt gracefully and worked her ass off in the face of deadly chronic disease and pain. Who loved Nature and animals and lived in middle Georgia near a women’s college on a farm called Andalusia.
It … just … never you mind.
So I ordered her short story collection for starters and a biography that sounds modern and highly detailed.
And I am currently obsessed with all the ways that my memories of things that were before my real life time now make perfect sense. Yeah. Go figure now figures. Holy f.
But never you mind.
The worst that can happen is that I will feel more grounded and more of a need to write narrative as a true Southern writer. And I have been meaning to get back to that.
When I was in elementary school there was this children’s story writing contest and I got in and they said I had talent, but you had to pay a nominal fee to have an agent look at your stories for publication. My father and I went back and forth. See, I knew I was a writer, in my bones. I could fly. But I didn’t have the money, right? And he said ultimately writers didn’t make any money and he didn’t want to encourage me. So he/we decided to let it go. And later my parents discouraged me from majoring in my preference of English and becoming a writer.
In my bones.
So this is good. Really really good.
And I wonder what she wrote. And I wonder what she would think of my Rebekah’s Closet and it’s pacifism? of Buddhism. or The Front Porch, Aunt Nell’s Time Machine or the other drafts I have in waiting? I feel a storm rising in my bones in a way … and it is a very very good feeling, I must say.
I think it’s totally admirable/cute that she had a crush on Thomas Merton, btw and want to hear more about that, hopefully in the biography. But other than that she was married to her craft, and an amateur painter, at that.
I checked out her home and studio on the web at Andalusia and … totally feel it. Reminds me of the movie Cross Creek, but even more familiar. Deep and wild references.
We used to got to Milledgeville to visit our Aunt Johnette who was in a mental health institution there, but my mother LOVED the city because she had gone to the SAME college that Flannery went to, the women’s college there, the name of which I am blanking. Georgia Institute for Women or something. I think it’s now the College of the Middle of Georgia or something now. Better name than that, of course, but it’s been transformed, and apparently Flannery loved it so, and used to walk there, until she couldn’t anymore, and lived down the street.
But also grew up in Savannah, haunt haunt. Gah. Her birth home also looks totally familiar. Soo fricking weird. But I’m letting it sink in.
Emotionally, I feel this spark of excitement about all of this Flannery business, deeply, and am trying to keep everything in balance, the painting, the NYC coming down, applying for a new show for those fotos coming down, getting turned down from another NYC show for those fotos today, Spring in its lovely amazing erotic sensual wonderfulness and the garden dreaming sinking its roots down already and reaching UPPPPP and blooming OUTTTT waving in the gentle and rougher breezes of April.
It’s a heady time.
I went to PetSmart to get chews for Chipper and helped a lady by holding her dog on the leash while she moved her truck forward. I loved being helpful.
I got a cinnamon latte at Starbucks on a card that the lady in the rental office gave me for giving her my fashion magazines after I have read them all the time. I mean, I flip through them like nothing, admiring the colors and styles and angles and thus and so and I’m done and why recycle them? They’re so fun! I get so many because I answered Bizrate’s surveys a time or two and get “free” or next to free subscriptions, but only Jason knows what they really cost per year. Anyway, so I hadn’t gotten a coffee in forever.
The barista is from California but she misses North Carolina and wonders why I’m in Maryland if I’m from Georgia and have lived in Tennessee. It’s so progressive here, I say. She shrugs, like, really, whatever?
My eyes get big and I smile like, Yeah. She’s cool with that, whatever.
Major conversation, I know, but it is what it is for me.
It is a beautiful beautiful day.
Come home to paint and research Flannery. No wonder all the 1950s car coats in candy colors in the hall closet in Granma J’s closet were a wonder and a comfort to me. They were the past but they were like home, all those pale wool boxes and triangles. Where’s my pill box hat?