One of the first events we went to in the fall in this strange new world that we inhabit was the Immersive Van Gogh exhibit at the Tower Theater in Philadelphia, PA. Inside we toured the artist's timeline of his life and work and were struck by the precarious balance that he was navigating between his artistic pursuit of perfection and madness.
The grand finale was sitting inside the theater auditorium and being literally immersed in his art and story. The photo on the cover of the card was taken inside the space. It was almost overwhelming and touched me deeply. I had no idea that it would inspire the theme of this year's poem until I sat to write and these ideas came spewing out in verse.
I hope that you find a note of beauty and balance in your own holiday season as we continue to navigate between peace and madness. I truly believe that we all come out stronger in the end.
Peace to you and yours. All is well.
By Richard Perrotti
The painter positioned his canvas
As the night sky beckoned afar.
How best to depict what he’s seeing,
To capture an avenue of stars?
He’d attempted, he’s tried to do this before;
Not once had it turned out quite right.
This time he determined to paint it
In the very best possible light.
What are you seeing? His inner voice asked,
Or better yet, what do you feel?
Are you looking to dance with the infinite
Or grasping to capture what’s real?
“I don’t know,” he honestly answered.
“I’m really not sure what I see.
It appears as such for an instant
Then shifts like a turbulent sea.”
Know this, his muse did advise him,
You must let yourself off the hook
You’re trying to capture perfection
As if following rules in a book
You act like your life is a lesson
That you ought to have taken to heart.
But creation has always been messy
And regret has no place in your art
Love simply lights one more candle
While anger keeps cursing the dark.
Let love’s light illumine your painting
And you’ll find that you’ve left quite the mark.
We paint on a canvas called Christmas
And struggle to get it just right.
Be still and hear what’s within you.
See it in the best possible light.
For love is truly the present
And the present is always here/now.
It’s the gift that always keeps giving
For as long as we accept and allow.