She sat on the stone steps at twilight
looked at the emerging moon. She spoke
aloud the question she’d been carrying
for some time,
“What does it take to be an artist?”
Does it take paintings in galleries
with large, fancy openings?
Is it a book announcing your name on
a shimmery spine laid upon a bookshelf?
Does it take the right amount of schooling
with the perfect technique and style?
what she was really asking is,
“Am I an artist?”
She realized that children
never ask this question.
They dare to believe themselves
amazing artists and
it is so.
That night, she made a bold decision.
She changed her direction.
Instead of saying goodnight to the moon,
heading to bed wistful,
she stepped into the
peculiar darkness and
walked into the wide world.
For the first time, she noticed
how twinkling light creates
the most interesting shadows.
As she stepped forth
with a rhythm of love,
the external voices ebbed and
a voice she recognized emerged,
one she remembered from long ago:
Her inner words fluttered,
“Practice creative work. Simply practice.”
Aha! Clarity. Practice is key.
How had she forgotten?
She held her hands in prayer form and bowed.
to herself, the moon and the Great Beyond.
She knew what she had to do.
And she did.
you’ll still find her asking questions. But, while she asks,
she puts her fingers
on the pulse of creation.
She gives herself over to the unknown.
She, giddy with excitement, awaits with anticipation
over what will appear as she creates anew.
She doesn’t understand the why or how.
This doesn’t matter.
She trusts the invisible, the magical,
the unexplainable, the divine.
She raises her hands in gratitude
to streaming Spirit, sailing Christ
for this egg of an idea.
I will nurture her
to completion and watch her
fly into the sunset.”
Now she knows
‘artist’ has less to do
with the ability to copy
and more to do
with the risk of
making your brave swath
in the world
with the mark of
An artist gives
the very core of herself
as an offering
to a hurting world
and places her
rainbow band-aid on
one aspect of
you’ll find her saying,
“Yes, I am an artist.”
And, she believes you are too.
Make your swath.