Thursday, December 3, 2009


Welcome Courageous Pilgrim, Sojourner of the Heart!

Hallelujah has been struggling with the word, "COURAGE." What does it mean to be courageous? Is Hallelujah courageous because she is a VISION FOLLOWER? I do trust more and more what feels authentic to ME. If I feel like twirling and dashing across a field at a party--I do, and I bring others with me! If I feel like laughing in my ESL class, I do, and the students start laughing too! This blog feels natural to me as a way to bring together my images and ideas. I genuinely want to SOUL BLOG and connect with ALL of you who want to TWIRL in cyberspace with me.

As an ACT of COURAGE, I am also LISTENING to what Hallelujah WANTS to do ARTISTICALLY. Let me give you an example. Recently, I was asked to paint the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe on a wooden form for a fund raising project for the Refugee Women's Network. These wooden forms are about 12" x 4" and rounded, conforming to the shape of the cloaked Virgin with hands clasped in prayer. RuthTruth intended to convey the traditional image of the Mother of Jesus that is so dear to the Mexican altar. Her intentions were earnest, and yes, there was some fear about the outcome. After all, these Guadalupes are going to be auctioned, and RuthTruth wanted to be sure hers was going to make money for micro loans for refugee women wanting to start their own businesses.

However, Hallelujah wanted NOTHING to do with FEAR! She decided to OPEN the DOOR, to BE CURIOUS. What could I do that is part of my pilgrimage, my journey? Hallelujah decided that this image of the Virgin was going to be related to her Bahamas journey, so the Virgin became a mermaid! Hallelujah's friend Ron brought her a block of mahogany wood, so she could make a platform and painted it with a white tropical bird, a merman, hibiscus flowers, and fish! We felt PEACE around this ACT of CREATION.

When the HEART is LISTENED TO and ITS MESSAGE acted upon, there is a PEACE. Is this COURAGE? Does courage = peace? Is it possible to align our actions with that which brings us joy, pleasure, and happiness?

That's coffee with Hallelujah. Tell me what you know about the COURAGE to be yourself and how you express that courage. Do you FEEL peace?


  1. When I was a painter, I often thought about courage as a very important component of creating art. Yes, I think that when the heart is listened to and its message acted upon , it is courage and takes courage. I don't know if peace follows though because I never got that far. It is interesting how difficult it is to just hear your own voice much less listen to it. I think that when someone creates an original piece of art, the originality comes from hearing your own voice, and then having the courage to act upon it, and not from just thinking up some kind of "clever" idea.

  2. Dear Carol! Hallelujah strongly admires your intelligent and very honest thoughts about the matter of courage and peace related to art. I am curious about your "difficulty" in "hearing" and "listening" to your voice. Hallelujah believes we all must first have the desire to HEAR and LISTEN and then FIND ways to do just that. My method is to rise in the morning before anyone else and while sitting in front of a blank piece of paper ask myself what I see. Of course, I rely on a certain repertoire of images or ideas, but then I visualize relationships between them. I am practicing staying PRESENT to the issues of my life and how they can intermingle with my imagery. Carol, please tell me about your art--You use past tense in your response, but your heart is very PRESENT. Do you still CREATE? Hallelujah supports you and wants to know!

  3. Ruth,Your Virgin of Guadaloupe is fabulous!!!
    I agree with art requiring courage, maybe the courage to try new approaches and perhaps fail, not just relying on old formulas. I wrote a poem today that addresses courage in art, after visiting an artist friend and his wife who have a studio here in the North GA mountains:

    He opened the gate last night
    And I walked out,
    Or maybe in-side myself.
    He showed me wild paintings
    Of abstracted landscapes and scumbled skies.

    I stood transformed,
    Aware of the secrets
    They yelled in my ear.
    We talked about art and text,
    Poems and music,
    Hard-edged bands of color
    And muted piles of random marks.

    He struggled to find the key
    To their success, yet
    I heard them loud and clear
    Below the Anglo-Saxon runes
    And studied script her scrawled across the work.

    I left with an answer inside my coat,
    A golden sling blade wrapped in tissue
    To blunt the edge
    Until I could untie her back at home
    And fling her scathing, untrammeled self
    Against the layers of my little soul.

  4. Dearest SEE SEE, thank you so much for your kind remarks concerning my Guadalupe! Hallelujah is pulled into your poem. I like to imagine "walking out" to discover that I had walked "inside myself." You describe such a rich experience. Hallelujah would LOVE it if you would elaborate on the use of the "golden sling blade." And do you SEE SEE think of your soul as LITTLE? Hallelujah wants to understand for SURE. Kisses and hugs Pilgrim!