I am writing this on the day after (Nov. 10), the day after (Nov. 9) of the 2016 U.S. presidential election on November 8.
I woke up at 3:30am on Nov 9, checked online to find the election results, only to discover the nightmare of a possible Trump presidency was now a reality. Nausea and fear set in immediately and I was up for the day. My first reaction was to do what many did – search the internet for possible escape routes. But where can one really run when a man with the temperament of a 13 year old bully (I taught in middle school so I know that m.o. well) has his finger on THE button.
I reeled around all day trying to get some work done on my computer but was lacking focus or the ability to think much. I felt like I’d been punched in the stomach knowing that the leader of our country, a country who for so long has been trying to live up to its own values, is a man who jokes about sexual assault and how easy it is for him to force himself on women, a man who belittles disabled people, a man who calls a whole nation a bunch of rapist (could that have been projection), a man who calls for increased and more horrible methods of torture…. I could go on but we’ve all heard it and we know who he is.
Finally I took refuge in my studio with paint brush and canvas. I had a canvas already prepared with a glaze of alizarin crimson on which I intended to paint something related to bees. At first I could do nothing but apply dark, dark colors with no form. I thought that I’d have to let the “bee” concept go and just delve into the darkness I was feeling about the state of America and the consciousness of her citizens. But oddly enough as I worked the feeling lifted a little and I started to feel a glimmer of light. The painting is not finished but here it is for you to see. It’s dark but the bees have come back and they bring a bit of light with them.
A week has passed and it’s still hard for me to find the light in this darkness. Guess I’ll just have to focus on the bees and the sweetness and light they bring to the world. And I plan to get much more active than I have been. We must stand up now and let the voices of love and compassion be heard loudly and clearly.