Patti Edmon Altered Attic: Seeing Red

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Seeing Red

I don't normally associate red with late winter, pre-tulip season that is; but when I went for a walk around the neighborhood, I noticed a swatch here, stroke there. Then I began looking for the color red. That's how it often is; we find bits of what we didn't realize we were seeking, in places obvious and subtle. 

Walking with my eyes open, awake, aware, I captured the brilliance of a red birdhouse on an otherwise drab morning. The plane of a shutter sweeping out from a window, chimes thoughtfully placed in a spot where the light catches, splattering an array of larger circles across a wood floor. We notice if we're lucky, in tune with the wonders that are too easily buried, tossed in with the unusable, leftovers, the rinds pitched in with compost that loses all color. 

Days ago we emerged, blinking like groundhogs in t-shirts reveling in the glory of the long-anticipated warmth, only to wake the next morning to a carpet of fresh snow, again, clumping on buds that followed too, the order of nature. When is the time ever right? John Lennon said that life is what happens while we're making other plans, one of my favorite sentiments. 
I consider myself fairly alert, living an intentional life and yet, so often I find myself lamenting the day that vanished, the unspent minutes, the sun waning even when March comes offering up an extra hour. And what of the dreams and prayers that fade like the crocuses and daffodils, red tulips bowing their graceful heads at the close of another spring. 
So much of  life is spent in uncertainty. I find myself suspended between seasons, slow to change despite an eagerness to plunge forward, held back by illness, fatigue, the busyness of the day, the stuff that has to be reconciled, completed, filed away, no matter that it really isn't important. I long for the simple physical exhaustion of chasing toddlers and grieving the onset of the separation I've been preparing for, unknowingly in the beginning, only too obvious now.

So I take walks and look for the innocence and splendor that I can hold close, even if only for a moment. And I thank God for the color red, for the tight fisted bud that stirs in my heart, the deep longing to flower that survives the unexpected, last snow.


Ragamuffin Gal said...

Oh..I love the red photos Patti! And your words are beautiful as well. Lovely post!

katie jane said...

Hi Patti, this is so excellently said. I, too, try to live in the moment, not letting go unnoticed the minutia of everyday life. But I find, as I get older, that the hours and days rush by. Seems like every moment is jam-packed and I fall into bed each night exhausted. How I ever thought I would be slowing down later in life is beyond me. Thanks for slowing down for me and showing me the "red". Loved it.

I'm excited about your Vision Board class. I looked it up on Amazon and it sounds a little like Sarah Ban Breathnach's "Simple Abundance" program, which I did back in 1995. I enjoyed it very much. I'm interested in seeing what you do. I'm registered to take a "Whimsy Art" workshop with Art Trader Magazine the first of April. It's for four weeks. I'm looking forward to that.

Leah said...

I just love these little splashes of red that you found! Fabulous!!

Curio said...

Your words...really moving!

Anonymous said...

I can't believe I missed this "red" post!

You should definitely submit some of your red photos for my "red is" blog. You can email me your photos at I will send you a link once I post them to the blog :)


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