“Nitobe Memorial Garden” DS, iPhone Photo, April 2017
So I am a colourist. There’s no doubt about it. I like colour. Today I am surrounded by greens; layers and layers and shapes of greens at Nitobe, an Asian garden on the UBC campus.
Huddled in my knitted forest green scarf with clear and emerald hand-tied beads and navy hooded coat, I sit to rest. The planked bench is dry. I take the Caesar Salad container out of my grey felted bag and eat. The lemon wakes me. I swish around the breadcrumbs in my mouth with water from a green gingham lidded jam jar I carry with me often since art school days.
Students crunch by walking on the path. They overwhelm my quiet peace for a while with their heated discussion. Photographers set up tripods in a couple of places in the distance; a waterfall rushes, bringing movement to the still water under the arced wooden bridge. In this day, when the rain has taken a break and the sunshine has not started, the greens clear the palette of my painter’s mind for the paint box of colour that will show up in this late arriving spring.
I offer a prayer of thanks
I stop to write in the gazebo
Moss lichen bark
Tiny patterned ferns
Marsh green shoots
Yellow polka dot buds
Small verdant mounds
Fill my eyes
Calls to the rasp
Of the gardener’s rake
Wind on my face
I look forward with courage again. I continue on the grey pebble path accompanied by the unseen sfumato of soon coming Valley Lilies.
Drops begin to fall but the exit is in sight.
“Be still and know that I am God.”
Book of Psalms