There is this particular place on the path down to the brook, a very precise moment, when a ping ping ping inside magically morphs into exquisite sensation. It feels like the tissue that occupies space between my heart and solar plexus is expanding. My breath catches. It stops me in my tracks every time. It’s not always the exact same place when this happens, it’s like there is this clear line, not straight or identifiable by sight, that marks just where the edge of very old meets new, where what has always been meets what is always possible. Today is no different, even when the context of strong wind and bright low sun, blue sky and cold air holds magic too.
For the first few years here, I thought it was a tree that was drawing me into its orbit and highlighting this line for me. It’s not a particularly distinctive tree except for the two trunks that have become one, and it feels undeniably old. It overlooks where the brook makes a dramatic turn and the water sculpts a landing. It is larger that any of its companions. It has commanded hugs at times and always receives reverence. Today as I passed by, my body adjusting to the sensation, a question appeared, ‘how is it that after four years I can still feel this way?’
I think there is little difference between food and art when playing in the creative realm. One moment this morning I was drawn into the kitchen to make a pite (pronounced payta), the Albanian pie my grandmother used to make with homemade phyllo dough. Making pite like my gramma puts me squarely into the realm of what has always been. It embodies the tradition and skill of making something so unbelievably memorable from simple and fresh and I am always amazed at what an accomplishment it is to pull a puffed up pie out of the oven and know I belong to a long lineage of those making this identifiable, sacred food.
And at the same time I was drawn into the studio to cut up a quilt I thought was close to done. Moving from sacred to sacrilege. It’s not the first time I have done this, in fact, it is a way of working that allows me to cross the line into what is always possible with my work.
I have no idea what will emerge after I begin to play with these four ‘new’ blocks. Which is the whole point. I realize I have been dancing on that edge of very old meeting new for a long time. Seeking places where the possibility of movement from a ping ping ping to heart opening presence has become a way of life. Some people call it balance. It always feels like this could be love.
Today, for the first time, I walked out into the middle of the brook and sat down on a large boulder there. This centerline of the brook happens to be my actual property line.
Here is another edge where it is possible to feel the wonder that is there, magnificent running water over ancient stone, as the space between what I think is mine and what is not. Edges are not lines dividing black and white or have and have not. I think they are always spaces that that contain the promise of something different.