This drawing was particularly fun to do. I wanted to draw Susitna (Sleeping Lady) and the Inlet, and it was a clear-sky day. I didn’t know that I would end up drawing the inside of the car and the view in the mirrors, or Denali (Mt. McKinley, the tallest point in North America). Before heading for this spot, I stopped at Side Street Espresso to fuel up. While I was there I was engaged in an exercise of inner attention that had altered my perspective.
Previously I had noted that there was very little in the way of scenery in the room that seemed interesting. I felt I had mined the interest from the place the last time I was there to draw. However, as I followed the inward focus, I began to feel enlivened in my senses. I began to feel that everything was equally interesting and alive, that every moment of waiting for my soup was infinitely sweet and compelling. No matter where I turned it was the same. I had a sense that there was no limit to anything, that everything could be penetrated kind of like it was a bottomless pit.
It certainly seems that I carried that perspective with me to my drawing spot, and the unexpected results were due to that preparation.
I never imagined that THIS would be on the way to Cushendall. I never thought I would descend into the basement to draw the scene there! The result was, however, that, after doing this drawing, I was more aware than ever of the “things” in my house, and that they, in a sense, have something to say to me.
The ring of four birches and one spruce is in our neighbor’s yard. We have a large picture window, and this ring of trees forms our view to the north. There is a reason I wanted to include this photo. Several years ago a couple lived in the downstairs unit with their young child; the woman was from Ireland. She told me that she never went into that ring and that she kept her child out of it at all costs. I thought that was interesting and a bit quaint when she told me. However, after reading over half of Eddie Lenihan’s book about the Good People, there is no way I would go inside of it. Maybe it’s innocuous ground, but maybe not.
[Edit Apr. 9, 2011: The following is a traditional Irish tune composed by Vincent Broderick called Around the Fairy Fort, played on the flute by Ben Saylor.]