“This being human is a guest house,
Every morning a new arrival….
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.”
Rumi – The Guest House
Rumi’s poem, The Guest House, is one of my favorites of his. For many years I would read it to my yoga students while they rested in Sivasana. This morning, after a cold, wet and windy brisk walk I settled inside of my warm studio to paint. Today my studio also became my Guest House. You see, I woke this morning with a lump in my throat; a lump of expression and emotion that as it always is with me, would only be sated by means of writing, painting or drawing. Otherwise that lump only grows until I metaphorically choke on it, unable to breathe.
When I first began painting the piece below I knew it would be a lesson; an experimental work. I’m trying some new techniques with watercolor and synthetic paper and had this idea that I would make a black and white watercolor look almost like one of my charcoals. The piece morphed at least a dozen times and in the end, looked nothing like what I intended it to be. This happens all the time, but today – today my emotions morphed right along with my painting. I had so many guests appear at the door of my mind, so many emotions, that I could scarcely keep up with all of them. I’d stop for a cup of tea or a glass of wine and sit on the stool in front of my easel and stare at her – the painting.
In the end I was grateful for each of my guests as they were able to appear within each stroke and I worked some stored up stress out from my insides. Also with my lump now gone from my throat I can breathe once more and although frustrating, I’ve decided to continue my self-study on watercolor techniques……and emotions.