On traveling and coming home

John Joe Badger hasn’t been much of a piper these last few days.  He has traveled many miles to visit different forests than his own.  He thoroughly enjoyed the company of his friends from other places.  But he missed his musical practice and the comforts of his very own hut.

We shall brew a cup of tea to nurse this head cold, often a side effect of getting out into the world at large.  And perhaps we will coax the pipes out of their slumber a bit in the coming days.  What do you like best about traveling, and about coming back home….?

On tea and frustrations

It has been one of those weeks for John Joe Badger and company.  Sometimes that’s just the way it is.  Life intervenes with unexpected catastrophes, things are dropped and perhaps broken, loved ones fall ill and must be attended to.  We are all in this together.

When things are a bit shattered and scattered, and we have taken stock of damages, the next thing to do is to put the kettle on.  A good strong cup of tea is called for.

I suppose all this Irish music and trips to the emerald isle have given me a keen taste for a strong cuppa over the years.
New flying feck buttons, key chains and magnets. Limited supply just now, but I am having fun with them!

After a few flying fecks have shot through the air, we always come back around to the tunes – once the dust has settled, and the tea has warmed and soothed our frazzled nerves.

 

Iris solemnly swears she will never eat bad deer poo again, ever.

Hopefully John Joe will have a more musical post for you all next week.  He’s been fiddling with the reed in his pipes and is beginning to “get his crow back”.  Stay tuned!!

 

 

 

ALCHEMY ~ Twist of Hemp, week 10

Piping is tricky.  Most days it seems like an impossible task.  We hear the playing of one of the greats, and we think, “there is absolutely no way I’ll ever even get one note which has the magic of that…..” but we honk away and carry on anyway, the attempt at puzzling it all out being one of the reasons for it all.

Like so many things in this strange life, the beauty of playing any musical instrument is in the process of capturing the seemingly incapturable, and of occasionally being granted a glimpse of it.  Much of the time, it is like turning lead to gold.  Impossible.  But we keep trying.

 

Stay and Wonder

There is a lovely and welcoming new gallery space situated right downtown where things are busy and fancy like.  Some of us “urban sketcher” types have wrangled a few of our recent drawings into proper frames and are having a show.  There is even an Opening.

Join us from 4-7 this Thursday afternoon at Columbia Plaza for the festivities.  And maybe you’ll be inspired to come draw with us sometime….

Cran Central Station – Twist of Hemp week 9

The pipers are learning a new march this quarter, their fingers attempt the gymnastics of a classic pipers move, The Cran.  They bubble and dwiddle, sparkle and dribble, deedle and didle and work their way toward the classic cran and that “stuttering warble.”

Carry on pipers!!  Carry on John Joe!  The world needs your music.

 

 

 

On a monday

For Angie,

My heart is poured out like water.

My bones are scattered.

My heart, like wax, is melted.

Psalm 22:14

Miraculously, the sun shines here this morning, setting aglow a sycamore tree outside my window.  I am delighted by this quiet beauty here at home, yet a feeling of deep sadness echoes in my heart.

Yes, and.   As it goes most of the time these days.

I talked with a dear friend in Australia yesterday.  A long overdue delicious conversation, rich with traded thoughts on writing, art, friendship and of course, the fires raging there and the crack-pot politics of both our countries.

photo: Matthew Abbott, NYT, Metro UK

It is all so much to take in, really.   The news from there in Oz, the war-drum-beating antics of the leadership in this country, the climate deniers in both.

Fear and fire, mayhem and madness.

I attempt, this morning, to find quiet in all of it somehow.

And I suppose, the usual paths will just have to do.

My work, both here in the studio and at my beloved day-job.  Moving my body to remind myself to remain there as I am prone to jettison at times.  Resting my mind – careful and mindful as to what is permitted to take root there.  Always a delicate balance.

There is nothing I can do just now with regard to the bush fires in Australia, or the beating on the drums of war by my own government.  But I can sow a bit of kindness where I can when I go out into the world today.  I can keep to my work of depth and beauty, in spite of and perhaps because of what is going on in the world at large.   It is challenging.

We must keep faith, we quiet artists, hiding in the sidelines of things.  But this can change the world.  At least on a small scale.   If this is all we can do, for now, today, then we must do it.

Sending love and thoughts for gentle rains to Australia.