Monday, August 19, 2013

Blurred


End-of-summer rain traces the outline of the window panes next to me; damp trails glimmering beneath the slate clouds that seem to hover close enough to touch, should I stretch out my hand.  September appears in a rush this year, invading August's heat with a wave of chilly nights and cool breezes that have me reaching for a shawl when I retreat to the porch to read.  Such a change is quite welcome after the igneous days of July, though I do hope Winter doesn't jump the gun as well.  His frozen claws can surely wait for the new year to begin, I pray.

It's rather staggering that the school day routine will be returning in mere weeks to our home.  My, how the summer has flown--so cliche, yet so true.  If I force myself to concentrate I can snap a frame into focus--the taste of fire-boiled coffee clutched in the blue enamel mug, my feet tucked beneath me as I watch the morning mist and breathe in the scent of bacon and smoke...marvelous, the escape of tents and fireflies and non-electric entertainment.  But then, I turn my head and the months are murky again, indistinct.  I feel....hazy.  Vague. 

I've been arguing with a canvas.  Days now.  It began as any other, shifting dreams that float through my midnight mind, lingering in the morning until I fill the broken teapot with water and smear pigment onto my pallete. Damp brushes dried on the old sundress I wear to paint in the summer, the open window whispering rumors of season's end in my ear.  A large work, this one--three feet long and two high.  Burnt umber and ocher and saffron, topaz and crimson and and gold....autumn dreams spill into my tangible world. 

Painting, for me, is a known animal.  The beginning: shapes and colors and place.  As if you viewed such a scene through an unfocused camera, bleary and undefined.  Then it's as if I slowly turn the lens in my mind, a line here, leaves there, and gradually the world shifts into view. 

But not this one.

I cannot seem to....find it.  Hours spent and it stares back at me, shadows and light and color.  I can hear the wind when I look at it, smell the damp leaves that have piled around the rocks....but I cannot see it.

Granted, these last weeks have been....unnormal. (is that a word?)  Unordinary?  Atypical.  Plans made have shifted with a phone call that involved the sentence, "...taken to the emergency room..."   The seizure of one's heart these small words can cause, the tilting of the planet.  I'd rather not discuss the particulars, if you don't mind, but I suppose it shouldn't surprise me that I am blurry.  The details muffled with emotion.

Perhaps I just need time.  Set it aside and wait a bit.  I think I will take it down to the dining room in a few weeks, welcome September as she arrives.  Sip wine and share a meal with it....let it rest as we live and love and weep and laugh.  Do you think life might seep into it?  Permeate the fibers with the vision I do not seem to have?





For now, I must be content with blurred.  For now.


18 comments:

Stephanie @ Life, Unexpectedly said...

Chantel: I SO love your writing, it's so poetical, it takes me to a different place while I read it. I, too, feel the first whispers of fall these days, a slightly chilly note in the heat, merely there but noticeable if one bothers to feel out for it.

I hope whatever happened in your family will have a good end! Love the picture so much, you're auch an artist!

Hugs to you!

Robbie Grey said...

Pretty. We too have been getting the cooler nights. I saw some gold leaves higher up and bit of snow atop Torrey's. Omens.

Sympathies, hang in there's, and luck...

Shelly said...

My prayers go out for you and yours, love, in hopes that things are swinging back into health and happiness. What a lovely painting, and lovely words. May September bring her gentleness and her peace.

terlee said...

I have yet to wake in the morning and smell the cool change in the seasons. In my world it's still too hot, still Summer humid, still endlessly too bright.

Your painting has life...soon you'll find its soul.

Mary Kirkland said...

I hope that whatever person had to go to the ER is alright. Family emergencies are never fun and usually stressful so it's no wonder you feel as you say, as little blurry.

Shea Goff said...

Ah, the let go. You are wise not to struggle with it, to make plans with it. Much love to you, my friend.

Mom of the Perpetually Grounded said...

I think it's beautiful already. Let it rest until that feeling overtakes you again but-I set my last aside 4 years ago and waited-waiting for this fall-no more school, everyone grown. I thought I'd be finished with hurry and worry. I'm not. Don't Do That! When it comes drop everything and pick up that brush. Your post made me long for fall, even more than usual : )

Hope everything will be ok and your'normal'can resume soon!

Brian Miller said...

first, i think the picture is lovely....an odd thought, what if it doesnt want to be more than it is?

when i am writing sometimes i need to go write something else before i can finish another as well....

ack on the ER, that will def rock your world....hope all is settling down there for you

Geo. said...

Blurry? A device to emphasize arcs reflecting and echoing arcs. Beautiful unified thing. Sepia effect seems to have been created atom by atom. Best wishes.

Chantel said...

Stephanie--thank you, I too am eager for autumn. Perhaps the painting will stay as is...? :)

Robbie--omens, indeed. (do you think we can bribe old man Winter to wait a bit?) Thank you for the warm thoughts, good company.

Shelly--thank you, such a beautiful comment!

Terlee--"endlessly too bright," I know those words and that day. May sweet breezes find their way to you soon...and thank you.

Mary--yes, blurry to say the least. (and thank you!)

Shea--your love is huge, and cherished. I'm afraid of ruining it if I force too much. *sigh*

Mom-of-Awesome--four years? I might consider it done. :) But should the urge arise, I will salute you and grab my brush; if anyone complains--I'm telling them you will ground them. xo

Brian--thank you, and perhaps you're right. How double looped can the creative process be, eh?

Geo--what a lovely, lovely view you have. Sepia vision...much to ponder there. Thank you.

Heaven said...

I wish I have time to paint ~ I love its shapes and colors ~ And sometimes blurry and muffled images have their own time and place ~ Welcome end of summer and hello to the new season ~

Lil' Nigger said...

I shole wicsh I wuz sittin an wachin a mixt rool by in da earlie monins but I was workin da fills dat times uh da day.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I know exactly how you feel about summer hurrying by but you say it so much better than I do.

The Loerzels said...

I'm so sorry to hear someone close to you is ailing! And yes, a glass of wine helps to calm the storm sometimes if only for a bit.

Chantel said...

Heaven--yes, I may have to just let this one alone...and welcome autumn with open arms, even blurry.

Lil'--well, early morning mists help to clear my mind of cobwebs and nightmares; a must before I paint. :)

Susan--lol, you're sweet but I think I'm just an adjective jumky...

Marie--amen, life without wine? Impossible.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I hope your friend feels better soon Chantel. And I am so ready for autumn. I love waking up on a cool autumn morning.

Dee said...

Dear Chantel, I know nothing about the process of painting, but I do try to write and almost every book I've read on writing suggestions that the writer put the completed manuscript aside for at least six weeks and then pick it up again and read it aloud to find the wheat and the chaff. Maybe somehow that works for painting also. Peace.

ravenjanedoh said...

I see a fire, and blurry seems to fit. Fire brings renewal. I understand where you are mentally here ... though its long past September, and the chill has invaded the air. I've been thinking of you and your writing ... the world misses you.