I’ve had a good run. I have had a number of quilts that felt just right and flowed from my fingers like water. I’ve been playing with silk painting, and I have liked the results.  But as the last stitches were going into my last quilt, and the silk frames lay empty, I was struck by such a terror: Nothing.

Nothing was coming. Oh. I have several quilts in sketch-stage, but they aren’t ready yet. I don’t feel them between my fingers, and I don’t see them coming to life. Not yet. So I stretched some silk and stared at its white, shining surface, and could not bring myself to mar the silk with paint. I couldn’t see anything on the silk.

What a wretched feeling!

But the harder I tried to come up with something, the more nothing pressed down on me.

So I reached out to a friend, and asked for a smile. And he gave me a laugh. Now the nothingness isn’t as frightening. I am laughing at its emptiness, and doodling on its blank slate. I have spread color on my silk, and added resist, and more color. I don’t know what the silk will be, but it is no longer silent and accusing on the frame. It is bright, and flowing, and colorful, like laughter.

So nothing did not win again. And the laughter my friend gave me now dances on silk.

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