Sitting in an audience last week, I was entranced by Lori McKenna’s singing.  She sings of home, of minivans and 5 kids, of being humble and kind, and of course, she sings of love.  Her voice was birdsong, melodious and rich.  Lori is a small woman, and the guitar looked oversized hanging from her shoulder, but it was very willing to blend with her voice to make beauty.

Between songs, she shared bits of herself with us – five kids ranging in age from college to kindergarten, her dislike of the recording studio, her love of stories.  She chuckled when she described one song-writing session:  Kids are all at school, I’m still in my sweatpants.  I sit at the dining room table with my coffee and the thread of words that has wrapped itself around my little finger so I don’t forget it.  I worked those words, trying to find their right places when I suddenly heard the door slam. Kids are home already? I looked up, and found it to be late afternoon – where did the day go?  And I’m still in my sweatpants.

Flow.  Lori was in the moment, in the flow, somewhere in time, fully immersed, in the zone.  Oh, but what a glorious state that is!  Creative energy flows in and out with our breathing, there is no time, intuition is running rampant and the maker is making.  This place of relaxed and heightened energy is not just for artists, writers, or performers – it can happen to anyone who becomes deeply involved with a project, and even to athletes.  Baseball players report that during times of a team getting hit after hit, the ball begins to look bigger and easier to hit.  (I have been watching a bit of baseball lately…..)

Several weeks ago, some of our members visited Becky Soria’s studio to preview her goddesses for her show, “Landscapes of the Goddess Within.”  Up in her painting studio, Becky described the times of painting as a time when she doesn’t think, she summons her intuition and lets it flow through her onto the canvas.  She said she often doesn’t know where her images come from, only that they arrive from within and make their way through her into the painting.  Music is a powerful tool for Becky to conjure this intuition and flow and let them do their magic.

Now it’s your turn.  Visit Becky’s show, which opens on November 4, and let her images, colors, and symbols speak to you.  Then let them help you find a literary response to her work in whatever genre you wish.  Time is fast approaching, as our reading is November 16 (see more details in this newsletter).  Don’t feel that flow yet?  The intuition not happening?  Poet Sara Cortez says, don’t wait for it to come to you.  Go to meet it.  Be ready – you never know when it’s coming.  And, so very important, put your butt in the chair, pencil in your hair.

Cori Austin

"An ekphrastic poem is like a jolt of electricity surging through a work of art."
- Patricia Smith, ARTLines2

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