Kerfe wrote about the Met’s Zen Garden in a recent post, and her photo became the inspiration for a large drawing, one that suitably lacks a gaining idea. Rather than having a plan, I am seeing what the materials suggest and experimenting with erasures, smearings, scrapings away of pigment using Daddy’s rugged old pocket-knife, and whatever various other methods of accident and surprise offer themselves for exploration. Having listened to lots of Pam Caughey videos on Youtube, I am experimenting with abstract approaches and imagery. Pam says you should play, and so I play.

Some of the graphic chaos is apparent in the detail above. It’s a meditative process. And my faithful canine, Lucy the Hound Dog, has planted her largish self next to the easel to be my Muse.

I noticed there were pebbles in Kerfe’s Zen pond (I know it’s really the Met’s garden but it’s inextricably associated in my mind now with Kerfe). These little pond stones became blue circles and the rocks adjacent to the water have become amorphous forms arbitrarily colored.

Found a Thich Nhat Hanh quote that captures my working mood:

Suppose someone is holding a pebble and throws it in the air, and the pebble begins to fall down into a river. After the pebble touches the surface of the water, it allows itself to sink slowly into the river. It will reach the bed of the river without any effort. Once the pebble is at the bottom of the river it continues to rest. It allows the water to pass by. I think the pebble reaches the bed of the river by the shortest path because it allows itself to fall without making any effort.

During our sitting meditation we can allow ourselves to rest like a pebble.

The drawing measures about 36 x 48 and is still evolving…


3 thoughts on “Far Away Zen Garden

  1. Resting like a pebble…so much better than sinking like a stone.
    This looks to me like a blue river road through some of your mountains. (K)

  2. A blue river road through the mountains sounds marvelous. That’s definitely something to seek.

    Resting like a pebble or sinking like a stone: I was wondering if Thich Nhat Hanh was trying to make some subtle point about gravity because the pebble hasn’t got as much choice in the matter as his commentary suggests….

  3. His point seems more like going with the flow. Sinking like a stone feels more to me like you’re carrying weight you don’t need.

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